Derived from any somatic cell type and possessing unlimited self-renewal and differentiation potential, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are poised to revolutionize stem cell biology and regenerative medicine research, bringing unprecedented opportunities for treating debilitating human diseases. To overcome the limitations associated with safety, efficiency, and scalability of traditional iPSC derivation, expansion, and differentiation protocols, biomaterials have recently been considered. Beyond addressing these limitations, the integration of biomaterials with existing iPSC culture platforms could offer additional opportunities to better probe the biology and control the behavior of iPSCs or their progeny in vitro and in vivo. Herein, we discuss the impact of biomaterials on the iPSC field, from derivation to tissue regeneration and modeling. Although still exploratory, we envision the emerging combination of biomaterials and iPSCs will be critical in the successful application of iPSCs and their progeny for research and clinical translation.
Keywords: biomaterials; disease modeling; expansion; induced pluripotent stem cells; reprogramming.
© 2015 The Authors.