Electrochemical Glue for Binding Chitosan–Alginate Hydrogel Fibers for Cell Culture

Yoshinobu Utagawa, Kosuke Ino, Tatsuki Kumagai, Kaoru Hiramoto, Masahiro Takinoue, Yuji Nashimoto, Hitoshi Shiku

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Three‐dimensional organs and tissues can be constructed using hydrogels as support matrices for cells. For the assembly of these gels, chemical and physical reactions that induce gluing should be induced locally in target areas without causing cell damage. Herein, we present a novel electrochemical strategy for gluing hydrogel fibers. In this strategy, a microelectrode electrochemically generated HClO or Ca2+, and these chemicals were used to crosslink chitosan– alginate fibers fabricated using interfacial polyelectrolyte complexation. Further, human umbilical vein endothelial cells were incorporated into the fibers, and two such fibers were glued together to construct “+”‐shaped hydrogels. After gluing, the hydrogels were embedded in Matrigel and cultured for several days. The cells spread and proliferated along the fibers, indicating that the electrochemical glue was not toxic toward the cells. This is the first report on the use of electrochemical glue for the assembly of hydrogel pieces containing cells. Based on our results, the electrochemical gluing method has promising applications in tissue engineering and the development of organs on a chip.

Original languageEnglish
Article number420
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Mar


  • Alginate hydrogel
  • Chitosan hydrogel
  • Electrochemical glue
  • Interfacial polyelectrolyte complexation fiber

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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