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Frontiers of Materials Science

Front Mater Sci    2012, Vol. 6 Issue (1) : 47-59     DOI: 10.1007/s11706-012-0154-8
RESEARCH ARTICLE |
The role of crystallinity on differential attachment/proliferation of osteoblasts and fibroblasts on poly(caprolactone-co-glycolide) polymeric surfaces
Helen CUI1,2(), Patrick J. SINKO2
1. Advanced Technology and Regenerative Medicine (ATRM), LLC, Somerville, NJ 08876, USA; 2. Department of Pharmaceutics, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
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Abstract

The objective of the present study is to systematically evaluate the role of polymer crystallinity on fibroblast and osteoblast adhesion and proliferation using a series of poly(caprolactone-co-glycolide) (PCL/PGA) polymers. PCL/PGA polymers were selected since they reflect both highly crystalline and amorphous materials. PCL/PGA polymeric materials were fabricated by compression molding into thin films. Five compositions, from PCL or PGA to intermediate copolymeric compositions of PCL/PGA in ratios of 25:75, 35:65 and 45:55, were studied. Pure PCL and PGA represented the crystalline materials while the copolymers were amorphous. The polymers/copolymers were characterized using DSC to assess crystallinity, contact angle measurement for hydrophobicity, and AFM for nanotopography. The PCL/PGA films demonstrated similar hydrophobicity and nanotopography whereas they differed significantly in crystallinity. Cell adhesion to and proliferation on PCL/PGA films and proliferation studies were performed using osteoblasts and NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. It was observed that highly crystalline and rigid PCL and PGA surfaces were significantly more efficient in supporting fibroblast growth, whereas amorphous/flexible PCL/PGA 35:65 was significantly more efficient in supporting growth of osteoblasts. This study demonstrated that while chemical composition, hydrophobicity and surface roughness of PCL/PGA polymers were held constant, crystallinity and rigidity of PCL/PGA played major roles in determining cell responses.

Keywords crystallinity      attachment      proliferation      osteoblast      fibroblast      PCL-PGA     
Corresponding Authors: CUI Helen,Email:hancuina@yahoo.com   
Issue Date: 05 March 2012
 Cite this article:   
Helen CUI,Patrick J. SINKO. The role of crystallinity on differential attachment/proliferation of osteoblasts and fibroblasts on poly(caprolactone-co-glycolide) polymeric surfaces[J]. Front Mater Sci, 2012, 6(1): 47-59.
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http://journal.hep.com.cn/foms/EN/10.1007/s11706-012-0154-8
http://journal.hep.com.cn/foms/EN/Y2012/V6/I1/47
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Helen CUI
Patrick J. SINKO
Fig.1  Effects of copolymeric composition of PCL and PGA on the contact angle of pre- and post-hydration compression molded films. Values given in the figure represent five different measurements on three replicate samples per materials, the error bars are the standard deviations. PCL/PGA films (both wet and dry) are similarly hydrophobic.
SubstrateHydrophobicity and thermal properties pre hydration
θH2O/degree (n=5)ΔHm/(J·g-1) (n=3)Tm/°CΔHc /(J·g-1) (n=3)Tc/°Cxc/%
PCL95.0±2.17962602676
PGA95.2±1.3712245612679
PCL/PGA 25∶7598.5±1.434209-
PCL/PGA 35∶6597.0±1.220112-
PCL/PGA 45∶5598.3±0.61334a)---
Tab.1  Basic parameters of PCL/PGA polymer substrates pre hydration: hydrophobicity and thermal properties
SubstrateHydrophobicity and thermal properties post hydration for 1 h
θH2O/degree (n=5)ΔHm/(J·g-1) (n=3)Tm/°CΔHc /(J·g-1) (n=3)Tc/°Cxc/%
PCL95.5±1.28062602775
PGA97.5±2.1722235712679
PCL/PGA 25∶7598.5±2.133202---
PCL/PGA 35∶6597.5±1.021112---
PCL/PGA 45∶5595.5±2.11713---
Tab.2  Basic parameters of PCL/PGA polymer substrates post hydration (1 h): hydrophobicity and thermal properties
Fig.2  Typical DSC thermograms of PCL/PGA films.
Fig.3  Representative DSC thermograms on dry and wet PCL/PGA 35∶65 and PGA copolymeric films. The hydration time is 1 h in water at room temperature. There was no change of PCL/PGA film crystallinity due to hydration.
Fig.4  Representative tapping-mode AFM surface topographic features for PCL/PGA films pre and post hydration: PCL; PGA; PCL/PGA 25∶75; PCL/PGA 35∶65; PCL/PGA 45∶55. Apparent smoothing of the post-hydrated surfaces can be clearly seen from these images. Scale bars represent 20 nm.
Fig.5  The pre- and post-hydration roughness of PCL/PGA films. There was significant decrease in surface roughness for post-hydration films. Roughness was calculated from a 20 μm × 20 μm area from AFM tapping mode measurement. Values given in the figure represent the mean of six measurements and error bars, the standard deviations.
SubstrateNanotopographic feature pre hydrationNanotopographic feature post hydrationFeature change
Surface roughness, (RMS±S.D.)/nm (n=6)Mean height, (Ht±S.D.)/nm (n=6)Surface roughness, (RMS±S.D.)/nm (n=6)Mean height, (Ht±S.D.)/nm (n=6)Roughness change, RMS/nmMean height change/nm
PCL37.79±1.20393.0±43.223.49±7.44433.1±32.115.340
PGA41.33±2.21170.7±24.616.29±1.4212.0±30.225.0542
PCL/PGA 25∶7525.47±2.32260.4±46.722.48±2.89275.2±22.12.9915
PCL/PGA 35∶6587.70±7.01313.5±35.421.39±5.77260.4±21.566.3153
PCL/PGA 45∶5540.93±8.3887.2±10.315.77±0.73108.2±14.225.1621
Tab.3  Nanotopographic features and changes of roughness for PCL/PGA polymer substrates
Fig.6  Pre-osteoblast attachment and proliferation on PCL/PGA films at 24, 72 and 168 h. Values given in the figure represent the mean of six different experiments and error bars, the standard deviations. (* = test, <0.05 between PCL/PGA 35∶65 and PCL/PGA 25∶75)
Fig.7  Optical microscopy of osteoblast morphology post seeding on PCL/PGA surface: PCL/PGA 35∶65 at 24 h; PCL/PGA 35∶65 at 72 h; PCL/PGA 35∶65 at 168 h; PCL film at 24 h; TCP at 24 h.
Fig.8  Fibroblast attachment and proliferation on PCL/PGA films at 24 and 72 h. Values given in the figure represent the mean of six different experiments and error bars, the standard deviations.
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