Collagen is the most abundant extracellular matrix (ECM) protein in the human body, thus widely used in tissue engineering and subsequent clinical applications. This study aimed to extract collagen from ovine (Ovis aries) Achilles tendon (OTC), and to evaluate its physicochemical properties and its potential to fabricate thin film with collagen fibrils in a random or aligned orientation. Acid-solubilized protein was extracted from ovine Achilles tendon using 0.35M acetic acid, and 80% of extracted protein was measured as collagen. SDS-PAGE and mass spectrometry analysis revealed the presence of alpha 1 and alpha 2 chain of collagen type I (col I). Further analysis with Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) confirms the presence of triple helix structure of col I, similar to commercially available rat tail col I. Drying the OTC solution at 37°C resulted in formation of a thin film with randomly orientated collagen fibrils (random collagen film; RCF). Introduction of unidirectional mechanical intervention using a platform rocker prior to drying facilitated the fabrication of a film with aligned orientation of collagen fibril (aligned collagen film; ACF). It was shown that both RCF and ACF significantly enhanced human dermal fibroblast (HDF) attachment and proliferation than that on plastic surface. Moreover, cells were distributed randomly on RCF, but aligned with the direction of mechanical intervention on ACF. In conclusion, ovine tendon could be an alternative source of col I to fabricate scaffold for tissue engineering applications.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.