EH Networks as a Scaffold for Skeletal Muscle Regeneration in Abdominal Wall Hernia Repair

Erin E. Falco, J. Scott Roth, John P. Fisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Incisional hernias are a common clinical problem occurring in up to 10% of all patients undergoing abdominal procedures. Primary closure, synthetic biomaterials, as well as xenografts and allografts have been used in hernia defect repair. Despite these approaches, the incidence of hernia recurrence ranges from 32% to 63%. To address this high recurrence rate, we propose an incisional hernia treatment that utilizes a functional biomaterial developed for skeletal muscle regeneration. In particular, we have developed a cyclic acetal biomaterial (EH network) based on 5-ethyl-5-(hydroxymethyl)-β,β-dimethyl-1,3-dioxane-2-ethanol diacrylate. Initial tests of the scaffold's mechanical properties indicate that the complex modulus of the EH network decreased after a significant increase in initiator concentration. Subsequent studies indicate that EH networks promote myoblastic cell attachment and proliferation as well as delivers functional insulin-like growth factor-1 to an in vitro population of skeletal myoblasts. This work establishes that an EH network, a degradable cyclic acetal biomaterial, can function as a scaffold for skeletal muscle engineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-83
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation through a Career Award to JPF (no. 0448684). The authors acknowledge the editorial contributions provided by Rosemary Klein of the Division of General Surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center.


  • abdominal wall hernia
  • cyclic acetal
  • insulin-like growth factor-1
  • prosthetic meshes
  • skeletal muscle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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