Published online Dec 31, 2009. doi: 10.4252/wjsc.v1.i1.55
Revised: October 30, 2009
Accepted: November 6, 2009
Published online: December 31, 2009
Stem cells are unspecialized cells that can self renew indefinitely and differentiate into several somatic cells given the correct environmental cues. In the stem cell niche, stem cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions are crucial for different cellular functions, such as adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation. Recently, in addition to chemical surface modifications, the importance of nanometric scale surface topography and roughness of biomaterials has increasingly becoming recognized as a crucial factor for cell survival and host tissue acceptance in synthetic ECMs. This review describes the influence of nanotopography on stem cell phenotypes.