Products invented by Indiana University School of Medicine researchers to direct the formation of blood vessels from stem cells have been awarded a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Therapeutic use of stem cells to treat diseases and damaged or diseased tissues has been limited by the ability to guide their proliferation and differentiation. Three-dimensional matrices have recently been identified as an important component in guiding stem cell behavior, but tissue engineering approaches with these matrices to create networks of functional blood vessels have not been developed.
IU School of Medicine researchers have engineered collagen-based matrices that have the potential to direct the formation of blood vessels. With these matrices, several physical properties can be modulated and controlled. They disclosed their invention to the Indiana University Innovation and Commercialization Office, which protects, markets and licenses intellectual property developed at Indiana University so it can be commercialized by industry.