Incorporation of Plant Virus Particles and Polymers as 2D and 3D Scaffolds to Manipulate Cellular Behaviors


Reference #:  00990

Invention Description:

This invention provides procedures for coating surfaces with protein particles purified from plant hosts as well as protein expression systems and procedures for using these protein-coated surfaces to accelerate tissue regeneration/repair. It also includes methodologies for stably incorporating various biologically active groups on the protein particles, immobilizing the proteins on various surfaces, culturing cells using specific media recipes and rapidly obtaining bone-like tissues.


A major focus in biomedical research is the utilization of plant viruses and other virus-like particles as multi-faceted, nano-sized building blocks for directing cell growth and differentiation. The surface properties of the viruses can be adjusted through chemical or genetic modifications to incorporate new biologically relevant functional groups. Furthermore, the symmetrical arrangement of the viral proteins make the virus particles attractive scaffolds for displaying identical copies of the functional groups for applications in stem cell cultures, electronics, catalysis, drug/gene delivery, imaging, and immunotherapy.


The surface coatings have been achieved with all of the mutants generated in the laboratory. The stability of the mutants has been tested. The protocols for surface coating have been optimized to provide maximal coverage.

Advantages and Benefits:

  1. This method shortens the time required to observe bone-like tissues from 14 days to 2 days. Such surface can also be used in the culturing of different cells, including stem cells.
  2. During the research, investigators discovered key proteins which can promote the early differentiation of bone marrow stem cells. These viral particles can be incorporated into 3D hydrogel scaffolds and lead to a rapid tissue repair method which has tremendous implications in biomedical applications.

Potential Applications:

Bone tissue regeneration/repair as well as cartilage, blood vessels and fatty tissues

Patent Information:
Title App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Expire Date Patent Status
Incorporation of Plant Virus Particles and Polymers as 2D and 3D Scaffolds to Manipulate Cellular Behaviors Utility United States 14/062,059   10/24/2013      
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
Qian Wang
Lim Andrew Lee
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