Bioactive scaffolds for tissue engineering: A review of decellularized extracellular matrix applications and innovations

We conducted a critical evaluation of decellularization techniques, quality control, cross-linking, and modification methods for dECM scaffolds derived from different sources. The functional properties of dECM components as well as their recent applications in multi-organ tissue engineering and biomedicine were thoroughly reviewed. This work aims to discuss and summarize the current challenges and limitations of acellular scaffolds while also outlining future directions.


Decellularized extracellular matrix (dECM) offers a three-dimensional, non-immunogenic scaffold, enriched with bioactive components, making it a suitable candidate for tissue regeneration. Although dECM-based scaffolds have been successfully implemented in preclinical and clinical settings within tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, the mechanisms of tissue remodeling and functional restoration are not fully understood. This review critically assesses the state-of-the-art in dECM scaffolds, including decellularization techniques for various tissues, quality control and cross-linking. It highlights the functional properties of dECM components and their latest applications in multiorgan tissue engineering and biomedicine. Additionally, the review addresses current challenges and limitations of decellularized scaffolds and offers perspectives on future directions in the field.

Author list:

Juan Liu*†, Qingru Song†, Wenzhen Yin, Chen Li, Ni An, Yinpeng Le, Qi Wang, Yutian Feng, Yuelei Hu, Yunfang Wang*

How to cite:

J. Liu, Q. Song, W. Yin, C. Li, N. An, Y. Le, Q. Wang, Y. Feng, Y. Hu, Y. Wang, Exploration 2024, 20230078.