Engineering Immunomodulatory Biomaterials To Tune the Inflammatory Response

Trends Biotechnol. 2016 Jun;34(6):470-482. doi: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2016.03.009. Epub 2016 Apr 29.


Current state-of-the-art biomedical implants and tissue engineering methods promise technologies to improve or even restore the function of diseased organs. However, one of the biggest challenges to clinical success is the lack of functional integration. A series of cellular and molecular events following biomaterial implantation poses an important bottleneck for developing breakthrough solutions. With inflammation increasingly recognized as a crucial component influencing regeneration, immunomodulation or immuno-engineering has emerged as a potential solution to overcome this key challenge in regenerative medicine. We postulate possibilities to utilize biomaterial physicochemical modifications to modulate the host inflammatory response and develop strategies for effective biomaterial integration. Biomaterial-based immunomodulation strategies can significantly ameliorate the outcomes of medical implants and tissue engineering therapies.

Keywords: biomaterials; hydrogel; immune response; immunomodulation; macrophages.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biocompatible Materials / adverse effects*
  • Biocompatible Materials / chemistry*
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / etiology
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / immunology*
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate / drug effects
  • Immunity, Innate / immunology*
  • Immunomodulation / drug effects
  • Immunomodulation / immunology*
  • Materials Testing
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome / etiology
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome / immunology*
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome / prevention & control


  • Biocompatible Materials