Elaboration of novel biocomposites providing simultaneously both biodegradability and stimulated bone tissue repair is essential for regenerative medicine. In particular, piezoelectric biocomposites are attractive because of a possibility to electrically stimulate cell response. In the present study, novel CaCO3-mineralized piezoelectric biodegradable scaffolds based on two polymers, poly[(R)3-hydroxybutyrate] (PHB) and poly[3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate] (PHBV), are presented. Mineralization of the scaffold surface is carried out by the in situ synthesis of CaCO3 in the vaterite and calcite polymorphs using ultrasound (U/S). Comparative characterization of PHB and PHBV scaffolds demonstrated an impact of the porosity and surface charge on the mineralization in a dynamic mechanical system, as no essential distinction was observed in wettability, structure, and surface chemical compositions. A significantly higher (4.3 times) piezoelectric charge and a higher porosity (∼15%) lead to a more homogenous CaCO3 growth in 3-D fibrous structures and result in a two times higher relative mass increase for PHB scaffolds compared to that for PHBV. This also increases the local ion concentration incurred upon mineralization under U/S-generated dynamic mechanical conditions. The modification of the wettability for PHB and PHBV scaffolds from hydrophobic (nonmineralized fibers) to superhydrophilic (mineralized fibers) led to a pronounced apatite-forming behavior of scaffolds in a simulated body fluid. In turn, this results in the formation of a dense monolayer of well-distributed and proliferated osteoblast cells along the fibers. CaCO3-mineralized PHBV surfaces had a higher osteoblast cell adhesion and proliferation assigned to a higher amount of CaCO3 on the surface compared to that on PHB scaffolds, as incurred from micro-computed tomography (μCT). Importantly, a cell viability study confirmed biocompatibility of all the scaffolds. Thus, hybrid biocomposites based on the piezoelectric PHB polymers represent an effective scaffold platform functionalized by an inorganic phase and stimulating the growth of the bone tissue.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)