Tuning the viscoelastic response of hydrogel scaffolds with covalent and dynamic bonds

Aleksey D. Drozdov, Jesper deClaville Christiansen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The processes of growth, proliferation and differentiation of stem cells encapsulated in 3D hydrogel microenvironments are strongly affected by the viscoelastic properties of the platforms. As the viscoelastic response of a hydrogel is determined by the rates of thermally induced dissociation of reversible cross-links, its modulation by introduction of several types of supramolecular and/or dynamic covalent bonds with different characteristic lifetimes has recently become a hot topic. To reduce the number of experiments needed for design of hydrogel microenvironments with required mechanical properties, a model is developed for the viscoelastic and viscoplastic responses of hydrogels with multiple networks bridged by covalent and physical bonds. An advantage of the model is that it (i) involves a small number of material parameters, (ii) describes observations in rheological and mechanical tests in a unified manner, and (iii) predicts conventional measures of viscoelasticity used in the analysis of viability of cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105179
JournalJournal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Cell encapsulation
  • Dynamic covalent gel
  • Modeling
  • Supramolecular gel
  • Viscoelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomaterials


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