Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
Stem cell development and fate decisions are dictated by the microenvironment in which the stem cell is embedded. Among the advanced goals of tissue engineering is the creation of a microenvironment that will support the maintenance and differentiation of the stem cell--based on embryonic and adult stem cells as potent, cellular sources--for a variety of clinical applications. This review discusses some of the approaches used to create regulatory and instructive microenvironments for the directed differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) using three-dimensional crystalline calcium carbonate biomaterials of marine origin combined with a hydrated gel based on hyaluronan.