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There is great demand for the development of novel therapies for ischemic cardiovascular disease, a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. We report here on the development of a completely synthetic cell-free therapy based on peptide amphiphile nanostructures designed to mimic the activity of VEGF, one of the most potent angiogenic signaling(More)
Mixed lineage kinases (MLKs) have been implicated in cytokine signaling as well as in cell death pathways. Our studies show that MLK3 is activated in leukocyte-infiltrated islets of non-obese diabetic mice and that MLK3 activation compromises mitochondrial integrity and induces apoptosis of beta cells. Using an ex vivo model of islet-splenocyte co-culture,(More)
In an effort to develop bioactive matrices for regenerative medicine, peptides have been used widely to promote interactions with cells and elicit desired behaviors in vivo. This paper describes strategies that utilize peptide-based molecules as building blocks to create supramolecular nanostructures that emulate not only the architecture but also the(More)
Self-assembling peptide materials have been used extensively to mimic natural extracellular matrices (ECMs) by presenting bioactive epitopes on a synthetic matrix. Although this approach can facilitate a desired response from cells grown in the matrix, it lacks the capacity for spatial or temporal regulation of the presented signals. We describe here a(More)
The mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix (ECM) are known to influence neuronal differentiation and maturation, though the mechanism by which neuronal cells respond to these biophysical cues is not completely understood. Here we design ECM mimics using self-assembled peptide nanofibers, in which fiber rigidity is tailored by supramolecular(More)
Understanding and mimicking the hierarchical structure of mineralized tissue is a challenge in the field of biomineralization and is important for the development of scaffolds to guide bone regeneration. Bone is a remarkable tissue with an organic matrix comprised of aligned collagen bundles embedded with nanometer-sized inorganic hydroxyapatite (HAP)(More)
Peptide self-assembly has been shown to be a useful tool for the preparation of bioactive nanostructures, and recent work has demonstrated their potential as therapies for regenerative medicine. In principle, one route to make these nanostructures more biomimetic would be to incorporate in their molecular design the capacity for biological sensing. We(More)
Bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) is a potent osteoinductive cytokine that plays a critical role during bone regeneration and repair. In the extracellular environment, sulfated polysaccharides anchored covalently to glycoproteins such as syndecan and also non-covalently to fibronectin fibers have been shown to bind BMP-2 through a heparin-binding domain(More)
A large variety of functional self-assembled supramolecular nanostructures have been reported over recent decades. The experimental approach to these systems initially focused on the design of molecules with specific interactions that lead to discrete geometric structures, and more recently on the kinetics and mechanistic pathways of self-assembly. However,(More)