Much research has been done in the field of regenerative medicine, with synthetic tissue constructs being one such success from this field. Tissue-engineering constructs for applications such as organ regeneration and as biological components in cyborganics have been developed. While there has been some success in stem cells tissue in three-dimensions (3D), which enables the cells to grow in a supported environment, there is a major limitation of such tissues in load-bearing applications.
Conventional synthetic tissue scaffolds cannot mimic the native properties of load-bearing or electroactive tissues in the body. Which includes ligaments, bone, cartilage, tendon and bone in the former, and cardiac, skeletal muscle, brain, and nerve in the latter.
A recent Progress Report in Advanced Materials highlights recent advances in the fabrication and application of nanocomposite hydrogels as tissue engineered constructs. Special attention to load-bearing or electroactive has been made and an overview of potential applications for such reinforced constructs is provided.