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Enhancing the hydrophilicity and cell attachment of 3D printed PCL/graphene scaffolds for bone tissue engineering

Wang, W and Caetano, G and Ambler, WS and Blaker, JJ and Frade, MA and Mandal, P and Diver, C and Bártolo, P (2016) Enhancing the hydrophilicity and cell attachment of 3D printed PCL/graphene scaffolds for bone tissue engineering. Materials, 9 (12). p. 992.

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Abstract

© 2016 by the author. Scaffolds are physical substrates for cell attachment, proliferation, and differentiation, ultimately leading to the regeneration of tissues. They must be designed according to specific biomechanical requirements, i.e., certain standards in terms of mechanical properties, surface characteristics, porosity, degradability, and biocompatibility. The optimal design of a scaffold for a specific tissue strongly depends on both materials and manufacturing processes, as well as surface treatment. Polymeric scaffolds reinforced with electro-active particles could play a key role in tissue engineering by modulating cell proliferation and differentiation. This paper investigates the use of an extrusion-based additive manufacturing system to produce poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL)/pristine graphene scaffolds for bone tissue applications and the influence of chemical surface modification on their biological behaviour. Scaffolds with the same architecture but different concentrations of pristine graphene were evaluated from surface property and biological points of view. Results show that the addition of pristine graphene had a positive impact on cell viability and proliferation, and that surface modification leads to improved cell response.

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