Highly biosafe biomimetic stem cell membrane-disguised nanovehicles for cartilage regeneration†
Cartilage injury is very common and results in considerable pain and osteoarthritis. Owing to its low self-renewal capability, cartilage regeneration is still a great challenge for clinicians. Stem cell therapy has been treated as the most promising treatment for cartilage regeneration in recent decades. However, increasing concerns about the potential biosafety of stem cell products such as immune rejection and neoplastic transformation restrict their further application in clinic. Herein, biomimetic stem cell membrane-disguised nanovehicles without biosafety risks are designed and prepared for cartilage regeneration. In this study, based on the disguise of the natural bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell (BMSC) membrane, Kartogenin (KGN) as a drug for cartilage regeneration was encapsulated into Fe3O4 nanoparticles as the core of biomimetic stem cell nanovehicles. In the core–shell structure of biomimetic stem cell nanovehicles, the fabricated KGN-loaded BMSC membrane-disguised Fe3O4 nanoparticles (KGN-MNPs) showed a stable hybrid structure with a uniform size and morphology in the physiological environments. Moreover, the prepared KGN-MNPs exhibited excellent biocompatibility when disguised with the natural membrane of BMSCs and good biosafety by eliminating the nuclei of BMSCs. In a cartilage defect rat model, compared with pure KGN, the intra-articularly injected KGN-MNPs were capable of regenerating an integrated organized structure with a layer of hyaline-like cartilage in a shorter time due to the retained natural activities of the BMSC membrane. In a word, KGN-MNPs as one kind of our designed biomimetic stem cell nanovehicles enable rapid and high quality cartilage regeneration, and provide a novel and standardized strategy for stem cell therapy in the future.