Customized material properties are crucial to control the biological response to the hybrid materials. Therefore characterization of physical (hydration, stiffness and viscoelastic characteristics, degradation behavior) and chemical (gel composition, crosslinking degree) properties of the material is done by performing swelling measurements, rheometry, UV-spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Furthermore, we analyze the secondary biofunctionalization of heparin through the use of HPLC. The network structure is further analyzed in respect to mesh size, and the uptake and release behavior of soluble (fluorescence-) labeled molecules by using confocal laser scanning microscopy (C-LSM).
Analyzing the uptake and release of fluorescence labeled molecules. Top: Schematic drawing. Bottom: Time dependent uptake of TRITC labeled (red) bovine serum albumin to the FITC labeled (green) star-PEG heparin gel.