eCM (Eur Cell Mater / e Cells & Materials) Not-for-profit Open Access
Created by Scientists, for Scientists
 ISSN:1473-2262         NLM:100973416 (link)         DOI:10.22203/eCM

2011   Volume No 21 – pages 94-106

Title: Impact of alginate type and bead diameter on mass transfers and the metabolic activities of encapsulated C3A cells in bioartificial liver applications

Author: A Gautier, B Carpentier, M Dufresne, Q Vu Dinh, P Paullier, C Legallais

Address: Laboratory of Biomechanics and Bioengineering, University of Technology of Compiègne, UMR CNRS 6600, Royallieu Research Center, B.P. 20529, F-60205 Compiègne, France

E-mail: cecile.legallais at

Key Words: Alginate, encapsulation, hepatocyte, tissue engineering, liver.

Publication date: January 25th 2011

Abstract: Liver-assist devices have been developed in the last few decades to support patients with liver failure on the road to recovery or transplantation. Fluidised bed bio-artificial livers – where liver cells are encapsulated within alginate beads – appear to be a valuable alternative to hollow fibre devices for improving mass transfers and enhancing treatment efficacy. This approach nevertheless deserves optimization in terms of bead production. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of alginate type and of two bead diameters (1000 µm and 600 µm) on mass transfers within beads and on the biological functions of encapsulated C3A cells.

After assessing the effect of the encapsulation process on bead quality, we investigated cell viability and metabolic activities (ammonia, albumin, alpha-fetoprotein synthesis and glucose consumption). They were successfully maintained over 48 h within fluidised bed bioreactors, independently of alginate type and bead diameter. Mass transfers were not significantly influenced by the latter parameters. Finally, suggestions are made for improving the entrapment process as a means of enhancing the treatment efficiency of the fluidizsed bed bioartificial liver.

Article download: Pages 94-106 (PDF file)
DOI: 10.22203/eCM.v021a08