Rheological Characterization of Biological Hydrogels in Aqueous State

Document Type: Original Article


1 Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, Sultan Qaboos University, Postal Code 123, Al-Khoud, Sultanate of Oman

2 School of Energy Geoscience Infrastructure and Society, Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, United Kingdom

3 Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, College of Engineering, Qatar University–2713, Doha, Qatar



Introduction: Biological hydrogels provide a conducive extracellular environment for encapsulating and growing cells and play an important role in regulating cell behavior. Mechanical and rheological properties of hydrogels can influence cell function, mechanotransduction, and cellular behaviors such as growth, migration, adhesion, self-renewal, differentiation, morphology, and fate. Determination of the rheological properties of biogels is important for the printing of tissues with control of physical properties and developing efficient drug delivery systems. The main purpose of the current study was to determine some important rheological properties of two well-known hydrogels (Agarose and Gelatin Methacryloyl).
Materials and Methods: Rheological properties of gel solutions with different concentrations were measured using oscillatory rheometry.
Results: Both storage modulus (G′) and loss modulus (G′′) increased with an increase in frequency. The rheological properties of both types of gel solutions were strongly influenced by the amount of concentration. The shear stress profiles demonstrated shear thinning in both types of gels. The viscosity of 1% agarose and 2% agarose was found comparable with 10% Gelatin Methacryloyl and 15% Gelatin Methacryloyl, respectively.
Conclusions: Results obtained from experiments revealed that rotational rheometry can be confidently used to determine the viscous and elastic response of hydrogels in the aqueous state. The results will help to select the right type of gel and amount of concentration for the bio-printing of tissues.


Articles in Press, Accepted Manuscript
Available Online from 07 July 2020
  • Receive Date: 22 December 2019
  • Revise Date: 24 March 2020
  • Accept Date: 27 March 2020