Injectable Click Chemistry-based Bioadhesives for Accelerated Wound Closure

Shuxin Li, Jun Zhou, Yi Hui Huang, Joyita Roy, Ning Zhou, Kyungsuk Yum, Xiankai Sun, Liping Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Tissue adhesives play a vital role in surgical processes as a substitute for sutures in wound closure. However, several existing tissue adhesives suffer from cell toxicity, weak tissue-adhesive strength, and high cost. In this study, by taking advantage of the fast and specific inverse-demand Diels-Alder cycloaddition reaction, a series of bioadhesives were produced by employing copper-free click chemistry pair trans-cyclooctene (TCO) /tetrazine (Tz) in chitosan. The gelation time of the bioadhesives can be optimized to be less than 2 minutes, which meets the need for surgical wound closure in practice. By adding 4-arm polyethylene glycol propionaldehyde (PEG-PALD) as a co-crosslinker, the adhesive strength of the bioadhesives was optimized to be 2.3 times higher than that of the conventional fibrin glue. Moreover, by adjusting the amount of the co-crosslinker, the swelling ratio and pore size of the chitosan bioadhesives can be tuned to fit the need of drug encapsulation and cell seeding. The chitosan bioadhesives possess no significant in vitro cytotoxicity. Using a mice skin incision wound model, we found that the chitosan bioadhesives were able to close the wound faster and promote wound healing process than the fibrin glue. In conclusion, our results support that the innovative click-chemistry based bioadhesives have been developed with improved physical and biological properties for surgical wound closures. Statement of Significance: The manuscript describes a new group of click chemistry-based chitosan bioadhesives fabricated by reacting copper-free click chemistry pair trans-cyclooctene/tetrazine with co-crosslinker PEG-PALD. The new bioadhesives possess the properties of simple preparation, injectability, fast gelation, a minimal cytotoxicity, strong adhesive strength to tissue, and enhanced wound healing responses. This innovative strategy may draw interests of readers from the field of biomaterials, drug delivery, surgical device, and translational medicine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-104
Number of pages10
JournalActa Biomaterialia
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • Bioadhesives
  • Chitosan
  • Click chemistry
  • Hydrogel
  • Wound healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biomaterials
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Molecular Biology


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