Effects of physicochemical properties of polyacrylamide (PAA) and (polydimethylsiloxane) PDMS on cardiac cell behavior
In vitro cell culture is commonly applied in laboratories around the world. Cultured cells are either of primary origin or established cell lines. Such transformed cell lines are increasingly replaced by pluripotent stem cell derived organotypic cells with more physiological properties. The quality of the culture conditions and matrix environment is of considerable importance in this regard. In fact, mechanical cues of the extracellular matrix have substantial effects on the cellular physiology. This is especially true if contractile cells such as cardiomyocytes are cultured. Therefore, elastic biomaterials have been introduced as scaffolds in 2D and 3D culture models for different cell types, cardiac cells among them. In this review, key aspects of cell–matrix interaction are highlighted with focus on cardiomyocytes and chemical properties as well as strengths and potential pitfalls in using two commonly applied polymers for soft matrix engineering, polyacrylamide (PAA) and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) are discussed.