Previous studies have demonstrated greater functions of osteoblasts (bone-forming cells) on nanophase compared with conventional metals. Nanophase metals possess a biologically inspired nanostructured surface that mimics the dimensions of constituent components in bone, including collagen and hydroxyapatite. Not only do these components possess dimensions on the nanoscale, they are aligned in a parallel manner creating a defined orientation in bone. To date, research has yet to evaluate the effect that organized nanosurface features can have on the interaction of osteoblasts with material surfaces. Therefore, to determine if surface orientation of features can mediate osteoblast adhesion and morphology, this study investigated osteoblast function on patterned titanium substrates containing alternating regions of micron rough and nano rough surfaces prepared by novel electron beam evaporation techniques. This study was also interested in determining whether or not the size of the patterned regions had an effect on osteoblast behavior and alignment. Results indicated early controlled osteoblast alignment on these patterned materials as well as greater osteoblast adhesion on the nano rough regions of these patterned substrates. Interestingly, decreasing the width of the nano rough regions (from 80 μm to 22 μm) on these patterned substrates resulted in a decreased number of osteoblasts adhering to these areas. Changes in the width of the nano rough regions also resulted in changes in osteoblast morphology, thus, suggesting there is an optimal pattern dimension that osteoblasts prefer. In summary, results of this study provided evidence that aligned nanophase metal features on the surface of titanium improved early osteoblast functions (morphology and adhesion) promising for their long term functions, criteria necessary to improve orthopedic implant efficacy.
osteoblasts; titanium; nanophase; orthopedic; alignment; surface topography
Surface roughness and surface free energy are two important factors that regulate cell responses to biomaterials. Previous studies established that titanium substrates with micron-scale and submicron scale topographies promote osteoblast differentiation and osteogenic local factor production and that there is a synergistic response to microrough Ti surfaces that have retained their high surface energy via processing that limits hydrocarbon contamination. This study tested the hypothesis that the synergistic response of osteoblasts to these modified surfaces depends on both surface microstructure and surface energy.
Ti disks were manufactured to present three different surface structures: smooth pretreatment surfaces (PT) with Ra of 0.2 µm; acid-etched surfaces (A) with a submicron roughness Ra of 0.83 µm; and sandblasted/acid-etched surfaces (SLA) with Ra of 3–4 µm. Modified acid-etched (modA) and modified sandblasted/acid-etched (modSLA) titanium substrates, which have low contamination and present a hydroxylated/hydrated surface layer to retain high surface energy, were compared with regular low surface energy A and SLA surfaces. Human osteoblast-like MG63 cells were cultured on these substrates and their responses, including cell shape, growth, differentiation (alkaline phosphatase, osteocalcin), and local factor production (TGF-β1, PGE2, osteoprotegerin [OPG]) were analyzed (N=6 per variable). Data were normalized to cell number.
There were no significant differences between smooth PT and A surfaces except for a small increase in OPG. Compared to A surfaces, MG63 cells produced 30% more osteocalcin on modA, and 70% more on SLA. However, growth on modSLA increased osteocalcin by more than 250%, which exceeded the sum of independent effects of surface energy and topography. Similar effects were noted when levels of latent TGF-β1, PGE2 and OPG were measured in the conditioned media.
The results demonstrate a synergistic effect between high surface energy and topography of Ti substrates and show that both micron scale and submicron scale structural features are necessary.
Titanium; Surface energy; Microstructure; Submicron roughness; Osteoblast differentiation
Ideal outcomes in the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine involve biomaterials that can enhance cell differentiation and production of local factors for natural tissue regeneration without the use of systemic drugs. Biomaterials typically used in tissue engineering applications include polymeric scaffolds that mimic the 3-D structural environment of the native tissue, but these are often functionalized with proteins or small peptides to improve their biological performance. For bone applications, titanium (Ti) implants, or more appropriately the titania (TiO2) passive oxide layer formed on their surface, have been shown to enhance osteoblast differentiation in vitro and to promote osseointegration in vivo. In this study we evaluated the effect on osteoblast differentiation of pure TiO2 nano-fiber meshes with different surface micro-roughness and nano-fiber diameters, prepared by the electrospinning method. MG63 cells were seeded on TiO2 meshes, and cell number, differentiation markers and local factor production were analyzed. The results showed that cells grew throughout the entire surfaces and with similar morphology in all groups. Cell number was sensitive to surface micro-roughness, whereas cell differentiation and local factor production was regulated by both surface roughness and nano-fiber diameter. These results indicate that scaffold structural cues alone can be used to drive cell differentiation and create an osteogenic environment without the use of exogenous factors.
nano structures; electrospinning; scaffold; titanium implant; tissue engineering; bone
Osseointegration depends on the implant surface, bone quality and the local and systemic host environment, which can differ in male and female patients. This study was undertaken in order to determine if male and female cells respond differently to titanium surfaces that have micron-scale roughness and if interactions of calciotropic hormones [1α,25(OH)2D3 and 17β-oestradiol (E2)] and microstructured surfaces on osteoblasts are sex dependent.
Osteoblasts from 6-week old Sprague-Dawley rats were cultured on tissue culture polystyrene (TCPS) or on titanium (Ti) disks with two different surface topographies, a smooth pretreated (PT) surface and a coarse grit-blasted/acid-etched (SLA) surface, and treated with 1α,25(OH)2D3, E2, or E2 conjugated to bovine serum albumin (E2-BSA).
Male and female cells responded similarly to Ti microstructure with respect to cell number and levels of osteocalcin, transforming growth factor-β1, osteoprotegerin and prostaglandin E2 in their conditioned media, exhibiting a more differentiated phenotype on SLA than on PT or TCPS. E2 and E2-BSA increased differentiation and local factor production, an effect that was microstructure dependent and found only in female osteoblasts. 1α,25(OH)2D3 increased osteoblast differentiation and local factor production in female and male cells, but the effect was more robust in male cells.
Male and female rat osteoblasts respond similarly to surface microstructure but exhibit sexual dimorphism in substrate-dependent responses to systemic hormones. Oestrogen affected only female cells while 1α,25(OH)2D3 had a greater effect on male cells. These results suggest that successful osseointegration in males and females may depend on the implant surface design and correct levels of calciotropic hormones.
Geometrical diffuse reflection is a common optical phenomenon that occurs when a reflecting surface has roughness of order of hundreds of micrometres. Light rays thus reflect uniformly in all directions with each ray obeying Snell's law. Of interest is knowing what happens when light reflects off surfaces with roughness of nanometres. Here, by introducing nanoscaled roughness on the hexagonal faces of ZnO nanocavities, we observe luminescent profiles with flowery patterns, replacing the usual whispering gallery modes. The unique profile for these nanocavities is attributed to wave diffuse reflection, which occurs when the features on the reflecting surfaces are typically nanometre-sized. Light with wavelengths of similar scale “sees” these nano-perturbations, and undergoes scattering rather than geometrical diffuse reflection. These findings could benefit the fields of nanoscale topography and nanoscopic uniform lighting by using wave diffuse reflection.
The topography of an implant surface can serve as a powerful signaling cue for attached cells and can enhance the quality of osseointegration. A series of improved implant surfaces functionalized with nanoscale structures have been fabricated using various methods.
In this study, using an H2O2 process, we fabricated two size-controllable sawtooth-like nanostructures with different dimensions on a titanium surface. The effects of the two nano-sawtooth structures on rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs) were evaluated without the addition of osteoinductive chemical factors.
These new surface modifications did not adversely affect cell viability, and rat BMMSCs demonstrated a greater increase in proliferation ability on the surfaces of the nano-sawtooth structures than on a control plate. Furthermore, upregulated expression of osteogenic-related genes and proteins indicated that the nano-sawtooth structures promote osteoblastic differentiation of rat BMMSCs. Importantly, the large nano-sawtooth structure resulted in the greatest cell responses, including increased adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation.
The enhanced adhesion, proliferation, and osteogenic differentiation abilities of rat BMMSCs on the nano-sawtooth structures suggest the potential to induce improvements in bone-titanium integration in vivo. Our study reveals the key role played by the nano-sawtooth structures on a titanium surface for the fate of rat BMMSCs and provides insights into the study of stem cell-nanostructure relationships and the related design of improved biomedical implant surfaces.
nanotechnology; surface modification; osteogenic differentiation; BMMSCs; implants; osseointegration
Implant osseointegration is a prerequisite for clinical success in orthopaedic and dental applications, many of which are restricted by loosening. Biomaterial surface modification approaches, including calcium-phosphate ceramic coatings and macro/microporosity, have had limited success in promoting integration. To improve osseointegration, titanium surfaces were coated with the GFOGER collagen-mimetic peptide, selectively promoting α2β1 integrin binding, a crucial event for osteoblastic differentiation. Titanium surfaces presenting GFOGER triggered osteoblastic differentiation and mineral deposition in bone marrow stromal cells, leading to enhanced osteoblastic function compared to unmodified titanium. Furthermore, this integrin-targeted coating significantly improved in vivo peri-implant bone regeneration and osseointegration, as characterized by bone-implant contact and mechanical fixation, compared to untreated titanium in a rat cortical bone-implant model. GFOGER-modified implants also significantly enhanced osseointegration compared to surfaces modified with full-length type I collagen, highlighting the importance of presenting specific biofunctional domains within the native ligand. In addition, this biomimetic implant coating is generated using a simple, single-step procedure that readily translates to a clinical environment with minimal processing and cytotoxicity concerns. Therefore, this study establishes a biologically active and clinically relevant implant coating strategy that enhances bone repair and orthopaedic implant integration.
biomimetic material; cell adhesion; collagen; osseointegration; integrin
The morphology and function of endothelial cells depends on the physical and chemical characteristics of the extracellular environment. Here, we designed silicon surfaces on which topographical features and surface densities of the integrin binding peptide arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) could be independently controlled. We used these surfaces to investigate the relative importance of the surface chemistry of ligand presentation versus surface topography in endothelial cell adhesion. We compared cell adhesion, spreading and migration on surfaces with nano- to micro-scaled pyramids and average densities of 6×102–6×1011 RGD/mm2. We found that fewer cells adhered onto rough than flat surfaces and that the optimal average RGD density for cell adhesion was 6×105 RGD/mm2 on flat surfaces and substrata with nano-scaled roughness. Only on surfaces with micro-scaled pyramids did the topography hinder cell migration and a lower average RGD density was optimal for adhesion. In contrast, cell spreading was greatest on surfaces with 6×108 RGD/mm2 irrespectively of presence of feature and their size. In summary, our data suggest that the size of pyramids predominately control the number of endothelial cells that adhere to the substratum but the average RGD density governs the degree of cell spreading and length of focal adhesion within adherent cells. The data points towards a two-step model of cell adhesion: the initial contact of cells with a substratum may be guided by the topography while the engagement of cell surface receptors is predominately controlled by the surface chemistry.
We present a facile and inexpensive approach to superhydrophobic polymer coatings. The method involves the in-situ polymerization of common monomers in the presence of a porogenic solvent to afford superhydrophobic surfaces with the desired combination of micro- and nano-scale roughness. The method is applicable to a variety of substrates and is not limited to small areas or flat surfaces. The polymerized material can be ground into a superhydrophobic powder, which, once applied to a surface, renders it superhydrophobic. The morphology of the porous polymer structure can be efficiently controlled by composition of the polymerization mixture, while surface chemistry can be adjusted by photografting. Morphology control is used to reduce the globule size of the porous architecture from micro down to nanoscale thereby affording a transparent material. The influence of both surface chemistry as well as the length scale of surface roughness on the superhydrophobicity is discussed.
Porous Polymer; Superhydrophobic; Superhydrophilic; Transparency; Photografting; Surface Modification; Superhydrophobicity; Superhydrophobic surface; Polymer monolith; Porous polymer coating
Accurate mechanical characterization by the atomic force microscope at the highest spatial resolution requires that topography is deconvoluted from indentation. The measured height of nanoscale features in the atomic force microscope (AFM) is almost always smaller than the true value, which is often explained away as sample deformation, the formation of salt deposits and/or dehydration. We show that the real height of nano-objects cannot be obtained directly: a result arising as a consequence of the local probe-sample geometry.
Methods and Findings
We have modeled the tip-surface-sample interaction as the sum of the interaction between the tip and the surface and the tip and the sample. We find that the dynamics of the AFM cannot differentiate between differences in force resulting from 1) the chemical and/or mechanical characteristics of the surface or 2) a step in topography due to the size of the sample; once the size of a feature becomes smaller than the effective area of interaction between the AFM tip and sample, the measured height is compromised. This general result is a major contributor to loss of height and can amount to up to ∼90% for nanoscale features. In particular, these very large values in height loss may occur even when there is no sample deformation, and, more generally, height loss does not correlate with sample deformation. DNA and IgG antibodies have been used as model samples where experimental height measurements are shown to closely match the predicted phenomena.
Being able to measure the true height of single nanoscale features is paramount in many nanotechnology applications since phenomena and properties in the nanoscale critically depend on dimensions. Our approach allows accurate predictions for the true height of nanoscale objects and will lead to reliable mechanical characterization at the highest spatial resolution.
Nanoscale surface manipulation technique to control the surface roughness and the wettability is a challenging field for performance enhancement in boiling heat transfer. In this study, micro-nano hybrid structures (MNHS) with hierarchical geometries that lead to maximizing of surface area, roughness, and wettability are developed for the boiling applications. MNHS structures consist of micropillars or microcavities along with nanowires having the length to diameter ratio of about 100:1. MNHS is fabricated by a two-step silicon etching process, which are dry etching for micropattern and electroless silicon wet etching for nanowire synthesis. The fabrication process is readily capable of producing MNHS covering a wafer-scale area. By controlling the removal of polymeric passivation layers deposited during silicon dry etching (Bosch process), we can control the geometries for the hierarchical structure with or without the thin hydrophobic barriers that affect surface wettability. MNHS without sidewalls exhibit superhydrophilic behavior with a contact angle under 10°, whereas those with sidewalls preserved by the passivation layer display more hydrophobic characteristics with a contact angle near 60°.
The greater surface of bioactive glass nanoparticles presents an incomparable and promising feature similar to the biological apatite. Nanoparticles improve cellular adhesion, enhance osteoblast proliferation and differentiation, and increase biomineralization for periodontal regeneration and dental implants. Considering the fact that interaction between periodontal cells and bone graft materials are important for periodontal lesion regeneration, the present study was undertaken to investigate the genotoxicity of a novel synthesized nanoscale bioactive glass and compared it with Novabone bioglass in periodontal fibroblasts cells, in order to approve the biocompatibility of nano bioactive glass.
Materials and Methods:
In this in vitro experimental study, periodontal C165 fibroblasts cells were cultured in their logarithmic phase and the genotoxicity of novel synthesized bioactive glass nanoparticles and Novabone bioglass was studied in different concentrations and a control group using Comet assay test. By using Autocomet software, three parameters (Tail length, %DNA in tail, Tail moment) were analyzed; the genotoxicity of mentioned biomaterials and control group. Obtained data were analyzed by SPSS 11.5 software, Kruskal Wallis H and Mann Whitney tests (P = 0.05).
No statistically significant difference was observed between the concentrations of Novabone bioglass (P value = 0.085) with control group and novel nano bioactive glass (P value = 0.437) with control group in the evaluation of %DNA in tail parameter. There was significant difference between genotoxicity of novel nano bioactive glass and control, and between Novabone bioglass and control group in concentrations of 4 and 5 mg/ml. According to significance of the mean difference, novel nano bioactive glass showed higher genotoxicity compared to Novabone bioglass in the concentration of 5 mg/ml (P ≤ 0.05).
The findings of this study have demonstrated that novel nano bioactive glass had no genotoxicity in concentrations lower than 4 mg/ml. Nanoparticles have a higher surface area in comparison to microparticles and thus, the amount and rate of ion release for nanoparticles are extremely higher. This difference is the main reason for the different genotoxicity of nano bioactive glass and micro Novabone bioglass in the concentrations higher than 4 mg/ml.
Biocompatibility; comet assay; fibroblast cell; genotoxicity; nano bioactive glass
Detection of a small number of circulating tumor cells is important, especially at the early stages of cancer. The small number of CTCs is hard to detect as very few approaches are sensitive enough to differentiate these from the pool of other cells. Improving the affinity of a selective surface-functionalized molecule is important given the sparsity of CTCs in vivo. There are a number of proteins and aptamers that provide such a high affinity but using a surface nano-texturing increases this affinity even further.
This work reports an approach to improve affinity of tumor cell capture by using novel aptamers against cell-membrane over-expressed Epidermal Growth Factor Receptors (EGFR) on a nano-textured polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) substrate. Surface immobilized aptamers are used to specifically capture tumor cells from physiological samples.
The nano-texturing of PDMS increased surface roughness at the nanoscale. This increased the effective surface area and resulted in a significantly higher degree of surface functionalization. The phenomenon resulted in increased density of immobilized EGFR specific RNA aptamer molecules and provided significantly higher efficiency to capture cancer cells from a mixture. The data showed that CTCs could be captured and enriched leading to higher yield, yet higher background.
The comparison of glass slides, plain PDMS and nano-textured PDMS functionalized with aptamers show that a two-fold approach of using aptamers on nano-textured PDMS can be an important factor for cancer cytology devices especially for the idea of lab-on-chip towards higher yield in capture efficiency.
RNA Aptamers; CTC; Human Glioblastoma; Polydimethylsiloxane; Lab-on-Chip; Nano-textured Materials; Microscopy; Basement Membrane
Our study was designed to evaluate osseointegration among implants with three surface treatments: plasma-sprayed titanium (P), plasma-sprayed titanium with hydroxyapatite (PHA), and chemical-textured titanium with hydroxyapatite (CHA). Average surface roughness (Ra) was 27 microns for the P group, 17 microns for the PHA group, and 26 microns for the CHA group. Bilateral distal intramedullary implants were placed in the femora of thirty rabbits. Histomorphometry of scanning electron microscopy images was used to analyze the amount of bone around the implants at 6 and 12 weeks after implantation. Greater amounts of osseointegration were observed in the hydroxyapatite-coated groups than in the noncoated group. For all implant surfaces, osseointegration was greater at the diaphyseal level compared to the metaphyseal level. No significant differences were seen in osseointegration between the 6 and 12 week time points. Although the average surface roughness of the P and the CHA groups was similar, osseointegration of the CHA implants was significantly greater. The results of this in vivo lapine study suggest that the presence of an hydroxyapatite coating enhances osseointegration despite similarities in average surface roughness.
Protein adsorption is the first of a complex series of events that regulates many phenomena at the nano-bio interface, e.g. cell adhesion and differentiation, in vivo inflammatory responses and protein crystallization. A quantitative understanding of how nanoscale morphology influences protein adsorption is strategic for providing insight into all of these processes, however this understanding has been lacking until now.
Here we introduce novel methods for quantitative high-throughput characterization of protein-surface interaction and we apply them in an integrated experimental strategy, to study the adsorption of a panel of proteins on nanostructured surfaces. We show that the increase of nanoscale roughness (from 15 nm to 30 nm) induces a decrease of protein binding affinity (≤90%) and a relevant increase in adsorbed proteins (≤500%) beyond the corresponding increase of specific area. We demonstrate that these effects are caused by protein nucleation on the surface, which is promoted by surface nanoscale pores.
These results show that the adsorption of proteins depends significantly on surface nanostructure and that the relevant morphological parameter regulating the protein adsorption process is the nanometric pore shape. These new findings improve our understanding of the role of nanostructures as a biomaterial design parameter and they have important implications for the general understanding of cell behavior on nanostructured surfaces.
The interactions of C2C12 myoblasts and human bone marrow stem cells (hMSCs) with silk-tropoelastin biomaterials, and the capacity of each to promote attachment, proliferation, and either myogenic- or osteogenic-differentiation were investigated. Temperature-controlled water vapor annealing was used to control beta-sheet crystal formation to generate insoluble silk-tropoelastin biomaterial matrices at defined ratios of the two proteins. These ratios controlled surface roughness and micro/nano-scale topological patterns, and elastic modulus, stiffness, yield stress, and tensile strength. A combination of low surface roughness and high stiffness in the silk-tropoelastin materials promoted proliferation and myogenic-differentiation of C2C12 cells. In contrast, high surface roughness with micro/nano-scale surface patterns was favored by hMSCs. Increasing the content of human tropoelastin in the silk-tropoelastin materials enhanced the proliferation and osteogenic-differentiation of hMSCs. We conclude that the silk-tropoelastin composition facilitates fine tuning of the growth and differentiation of these cells.
Rough titanium (Ti) surface microarchitecture and high surface energy have been shown to increase osteoblast differentiation, and this response occurs through signaling via the α2β1 integrin. However, clinical success of implanted materials is dependent not only upon osseointegration but also on neovascularization in the peri-implant bone. Here we tested the hypothesis that Ti surface microtopography and energy interact via α2β1 signaling to regulate the expression of angiogenic growth factors. Primary human osteoblasts (HOB), MG63 cells and MG63 cells silenced for α2 integrin were cultured on Ti disks with different surface microtopographies and energies. Secreted levels of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A), basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF-2), epidermal growth factor (EGF), and angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1) were measured. VEGF-A increased 170% and 250% in MG63 cultures, and 178% and 435% in HOB cultures on SLA and modSLA substrates, respectively. In MG63 cultures, FGF-2 levels increased 20 and 40-fold while EGF increased 4 and 6-fold on SLA and modSLA surfaces. These factors were undetectable in HOB cultures. Ang-1 levels were unchanged on all surfaces. Media from modSLA MG63 cultures induced more rapid differentiation of endothelial cells and this effect was inhibited by anti-VEGF-A antibodies. Treatment of MG63 cells with 1α,25(OH)2D3 enhanced levels of VEGF-A on SLA and modSLA. Silencing the α2 integrin subunit increased VEGF-A levels and decreased FGF-2 levels. These results show that Ti surface microtopography and energy modulate secretion of angiogenic growth factors by osteoblasts and that this regulation is mediated at least partially via α2β1 integrin signaling.
Titanium; microstructure; surface energy; osteoblast; angiogenesis; VEGF
The long-term clinical success of dental implants is related to their early osseointegration. This paper reviews the different steps of the interactions between biological fluids, cells, tissues, and surfaces of implants. Immediately following implantation, implants are in contact with proteins and platelets from blood. The differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells will then condition the peri-implant tissue healing. Direct bone-to-implant contact is desired for a biomechanical anchoring of implants to bone rather than fibrous tissue encapsulation. Surfaces properties such as chemistry and roughness play a determinant role in these biological interactions. Physicochemical features in the nanometer range may ultimately control the adsorption of proteins as well as the adhesion and differentiation of cells. Nanotechnologies are increasingly used for surface modifications of dental implants. Another approach to enhance osseointegration is the application of thin calcium phosphate (CaP) coatings. Bioactive CaP nanocrystals deposited on titanium implants are resorbable and stimulate bone apposition and healing. Future nanometer-controlled surfaces may ultimately direct the nature of peri-implant tissues and improve their clinical success rate.
The basement membrane possesses a rich 3-dimensional nanoscale topography that provides a physical stimulus, which may modulate cell-substratum adhesion. We have investigated the strength of cell-substratum adhesion on nanoscale topographic features of a similar scale to that of the native basement membrane. SV40 human corneal epithelial cells were challenged by well-defined fluid shear, and cell detachment was monitored. We created silicon substrata with uniform grooves and ridges having pitch dimensions of 400-4000 nm using X-ray lithography. F-actin labeling of cells that had been incubated for 24 hours revealed that the percentage of aligned and elongated cells on the patterned surfaces was the same regardless of pitch dimension. In contrast, at the highest fluid shear, a biphasic trend in cell adhesion was observed with cells being most adherent to the smaller features. The 400 nm pitch had the highest percentage of adherent cells at the end of the adhesion assay. The effect of substratum topography was lost for the largest features evaluated, the 4000 nm pitch. Qualitative and quantitative analyses of the cells during and after flow indicated that the aligned and elongated cells on the 400 nm pitch were more tightly adhered compared to aligned cells on the larger patterns. Selected experiments with primary cultured human corneal epithelial cells produced similar results to the SV40 human corneal epithelial cells. These findings have relevance to interpretation of cell-biomaterial interactions in tissue engineering and prosthetic design.
Nanoscale topography; Cell-substratum adhesion; Epithelium
To facilitate locomotion and support the body, the skeleton relies on the transmission of forces between muscles and bones through complex junctions called entheses. The varying mechanical and biological properties of the enthesis make healing this avascular tissue difficult; hence the need for an engineered alternative. Cells in situ interact with their environment on the nano-scale which suggests that engineered approaches to enthesis regeneration should include such biologically-inspired nano-scale surface features. The present in vitro study investigated the effects of etching poly-lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) scaffolds to produce nano-topography on the adhesion of fibroblasts and osteoblasts, two integral enthesis cell types. Nano-topography was produced on PLGA by etching the scaffolds in NaOH. Results showed that etching PLGA with NaOH to create nano-scale surface features decreased fibroblast adhesion while it increased osteoblast adhesion; criteria critical for the spatial control of osteoblast and fibroblast adhesion for a successful enthesis tissue engineering material. Thus, the results of this study showed for the first time collective evidence that PLGA can be either treated with NaOH or not on ends of an enthesis tissue engineering construct to spatially increase osteoblast and fibroblast adhesion, respectively.
nano-topography; enthesis; tissue engineering; scaffold; porosity
Topographic features are generally accepted as being capable of modulating cell alignment. Of particular interest is the potential that topographic feature geometry induces cell alignment indirectly through impacting adsorbed proteins from the cell culture medium on the surface of the substrate. However, it has also been reported that micron-scale feature depth significantly impacts the level of alignment of cellular populations on topography, despite being orders of magnitude larger than the average adsorbed protein layer (nm). In order to better determine the impact of biomimetic length scale topography and adsorbed protein interaction on cellular morphology we have systematically investigated the effect of combinations of sub-micron to nanoscale feature depth and lateral pitch on corneal epithelial cell alignment. In addition we have used the unique properties of a serum-free media alternative in direct comparison to serum-rich medium to investigate the role of culture medium protein composition on cellular alignment to topographically patterned surfaces. Our observation that increasing groove depth elicited larger populations of corneal epithelial cells to align regardless of culture medium composition and of cell orientation with respect to the topography, suggests that these cells can sense changes in topographic feature depths independent of adsorbed proteins localized along ridge edges and tops. However, our data also suggests a strong combinatory effect of topography with culture medium composition, and also a cell type dependency in determining the level of cell elongation and alignment to nanoscale topographic features.
nanotopography; corneal epithelial cells; contact guidance
An implantable model system was developed to investigate the effects of nanoscale surface properties on the osseointegration of titanium implants in rat tibia. Topographical nanostructures with a well-defined shape (semispherical protrusions) and variable size (60 nm, 120 nm and 220 nm) were produced by colloidal lithography on the machined implants. Furthermore, the implants were sputter-coated with titanium to ensure a uniform surface chemical composition. The histological evaluation of bone around the implants at 7 days and 28 days after implantation was performed on the ground sections using optical and scanning electron microscopy. Differences between groups were found mainly in the new bone formation process in the endosteal and marrow bone compartments after 28 days of implantation. Implant surfaces with 60 nm features demonstrated significantly higher bone-implant contact (BIC, 76%) compared with the 120 nm (45%) and control (57%) surfaces. This effect was correlated to the higher density and curvature of the 60 nm protrusions. Within the developed model system, nanoscale protrusions could be applied and systematically varied in size in the presence of microscale background roughness on complex screw-shaped implants. Moreover, the model can be adapted for the systematic variation of surface nanofeature density and chemistry, which opens up new possibilities for in vivo studies of various nanoscale surface-bone interactions.
in vivo; nanotopography; osseointegration; titanium implant; colloidal lithography
Microstructured and high surface energy titanium substrates increase osseointegration in vivo. In vitro, osteoblast differentiation is increased, but effects of the surface directly on multipotent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and consequences for MSCs in the peri-implant environment are not known. We evaluated responses of human MSCs to substrate surface properties and examined the underlying mechanisms involved. MSCs exhibited osteoblast characteristics (alkaline phosphatase, RUNX2, and osteocalcin) when grown on microstructured Ti; this effect was more robust with increased hydrophilicity. Factors produced by osteoblasts grown on microstructured Ti were sufficient to induce co-cultured MSC differentiation to osteoblasts. Silencing studies showed that this was due to signaling via α2β1 integrins in osteoblasts on the substrate surface and paracrine action of secreted Dkk2. Thus, human MSCs are sensitive to substrate properties that induce osteoblastic differentiation; osteoblasts interact with these surface properties via α2β1 and secrete Dkk2, which acts on distal MSCs.
We have developed a novel approach combining high information and high throughput analysis to characterize cell adhesive responses to biomaterial substrates possessing gradients in surface topography. These gradients were fabricated by subjecting thin film blends of tyrosine-derived polycarbonates, i.e. poly(DTE carbonate) and poly(DTO carbonate) to a gradient temperature annealing protocol. Saos-2 cells engineered with a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter for farnesylation (GFP-f) were cultured on the gradient substrates to assess the effects of nanoscale surface topology and roughness that arise during the phase separation process on cell attachment and adhesion strength. The high throughput imaging approach allowed us to rapidly identify the “global” and “high content” structure-property relationships between cell adhesion and biomaterial properties such as polymer chemistry and topography. This study found that cell attachment and spreading increased monotonically with DTE content and were significantly elevated at the position with intermediate regions corresponding to the highest “gradient” of surface roughness, while GFP-f farnesylation intensity descriptors were sensitively altered by surface roughness, even in cells with comparable levels of spreading.
Skin can be damaged by the environment easily. Skin cream is an effective and rapid way to moisten the skin by changing the skin surface properties. Rat skin and pig skin are common animal models for studies and were used as skin samples in this study. The nano- and macroscale friction and durability of damaged skin were measured and compared with those of virgin (intact/undamaged) skin. The effect of skin cream on friction and durability of damaged and virgin skin samples is discussed. The effects of velocity, normal load, relative humidity and number of cycles were studied. The nanoscale studies were performed by using atomic force microscope (AFM), and macroscale studies were performed by using a pin-on-disk (POD) reciprocating tribometer. It was found that damaged skin has different mechanical properties, surface roughness, contact angle, friction and durability compared to that of virgin skin. But similar changes occur after skin cream treatment. Rat and pig skin show similar trends in friction and durability.
atomic force microscopy; damaged skin; pig skin; rat skin; skin cream