The effect of biomimetic coating and cuttlebone microparticle reinforcement on the osteoconductive properties of cellulose-based scaffolds
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Polymer-based scaffolds have already gained popularity in many biomedical applications due to convenient routes for fabrication and favourable structural, physicochemical and functional characteristics. However, polymeric scaffolds lack osteoconductivity and some synthetic polymers carry the risk of inflammatory response caused by degradation by-products. Those facts limit their practical use in bone tissue engineering. In this study, three-dimensional (3D) porous scaffolds from naturally derived polymer, namely regenerated cellulose, were prepared using a non-hydrolytic sol-gel and lyophilization techniques. To induce osteoconductive properties of the polymeric scaffolds, cuttlebone microparticles were immobilized and the surface coating was achieved via in vitro mineralization using 10-fold concentrated simulated body fluid (10x SBF). Biogenic activity of cuttlebone is explained by its chemical composition, which includes polysaccharide beta-chitin and macro-, micro- and trace elements favourable for mineralization. Parallel the scaffolds were examined during long-term (24 weeks) in vitro mineralization in 1x SBF for the purpose to investigate apatite-forming ability of the scaffolds. A nice cauliflower-like structures and needle-like dents of the spherical aggregates, which are characteristic to hydroxyapatite precursors, were observed on the surface of cellulose/cuttlebone scaffolds by SEM. 10x SBF coating enhanced cell attachment to the scaffolds because SBF elements are known to increase bioactivity by inducing re-deposition of carbonate apatite crystallites on scaffold surface. Additionally, calcium and phosphate depositions were clearly observed on the developed scaffolds using von Kossa and Alizarin Red S staining. Proliferative and osteoconductive effects on the osteoblast-like MG-63 cells demonstrate the cellulose/cuttlebone scaffolds soaked in 10x SBF as a favourable material for bone tissue engineering. (C) 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.