Biomaterial, an essential component of tissue engineering, serves as a scaffold for cell attachment, proliferation, and differentiation; provides the three dimensional (3D) structure and, in some applications, the mechanical strength required for the engineered tissue. Both synthetic and naturally occurring calcium phosphate based biomaterial have been used as bone fillers or bone extenders in orthopedic and reconstructive surgeries. This study aims to evaluate two popular calcium phosphate based biomaterial i.e., hydroxyapatite (HA) and tricalcium phosphate/hydroxyapatite (TCP/HA) granules as scaffold materials in bone tissue engineering. In our strategy for constructing tissue engineered bone, human osteoprogenitor cells derived from periosteum were incorporated with human plasma-derived fibrin and seeded onto HA or TCP/HA forming 3D tissue constructs and further maintained in osteogenic medium for 4 weeks to induce osteogenic differentiation. Constructs were subsequently implanted intramuscularly in nude mice for 8 weeks after which mice were euthanized and constructs harvested for evaluation. The differential cell response to the biomaterial (HA or TCP/HA) adopted as scaffold was illustrated by the histology of undecalcified constructs and evaluation using SEM and TEM. Both HA and TCP/HA constructs showed evidence of cell proliferation, calcium deposition, and collagen bundle formation albeit lesser in the former. Our findings demonstrated that TCP/HA is superior between the two in early bone formation and hence is the scaffold material of choice in bone tissue engineering.
The strategy used to generate tissue-engineered bone construct, in view of future clinical application is presented here. Osteoprogenitor cells from periosteum of consenting scoliosis patients were isolated. Growth factors viz TGF-B2, bFGF and IGF-1 were used in concert to increase cell proliferation during in vitro cell expansion. Porous tricalcium phosphate (TCP)-hydroxyapatite (HA) scaffold was used as the scaffold to form 3D bone construct. We found that the addition of growth factors, greatly increased cell growth by 2 to 7 fold. TCP/HA proved to be the ideal scaffold for cell attachment and proliferation. Hence, this model will be further carried out on animal trial.
Patient own fibrin may act as the safest, cheapest and immediate available biodegradable scaffold material in clinical 1 tissue engineering. This study investigated the feasibility of using patient own fibrin isolated from whole blood to construct a new human cartilage, skin and bone. Constructed in vitro tissues were implanted on the dorsal part of the nude mice for in vivo maturation. After 8 weeks of implantation, the engineered tissues were removed for histological analysis. Our results demonstrated autologous fibrin has great potential as clinical scaffold material to construct various human tissues.
Anodizing could be used for bio-functionalization of the surfaces of titanium alloys. In this study, we use anodizing for creating nanotubes on the surface of porous titanium alloy bone substitutes manufactured using selective laser melting. Different sets of anodizing parameters (voltage: 10 or 20V anodizing time: 30min to 3h) are used for anodizing porous titanium structures that were later heat treated at 500°C. The nanotopographical features are examined using electron microscopy while the bioactivity of anodized surfaces is measured using immersion tests in the simulated body fluid (SBF). Moreover, the effects of anodizing and heat treatment on the performance of one representative anodized porous titanium structures are evaluated using in vitro cell culture assays using human periosteum-derived cells (hPDCs). It has been shown that while anodizing with different anodizing parameters results in very different nanotopographical features, i.e. nanotubes in the range of 20 to 55nm, anodized surfaces have limited apatite-forming ability regardless of the applied anodizing parameters. The results of in vitro cell culture show that both anodizing, and thus generation of regular nanotopographical feature, and heat treatment improve the cell culture response of porous titanium. In particular, cell proliferation measured using metabolic activity and DNA content was improved for anodized and heat treated as well as for anodized but not heat-treated specimens. Heat treatment additionally improved the cell attachment of porous titanium surfaces and upregulated expression of osteogenic markers. Anodized but not heat-treated specimens showed some limited signs of upregulated expression of osteogenic markers. In conclusion, while varying the anodizing parameters creates different nanotube structure, it does not improve apatite-forming ability of porous titanium. However, both anodizing and heat treatment at 500°C improve the cell culture response of porous titanium.
The large surface area of highly porous titanium structures produced by additive manufacturing can be modified using biofunctionalizing surface treatments to improve the bone regeneration performance of these otherwise bioinert biomaterials. In this longitudinal study, we applied and compared three types of biofunctionalizing surface treatments, namely acid-alkali (AcAl), alkali-acid-heat treatment (AlAcH), and anodizing-heat treatment (AnH). The effects of treatments on apatite forming ability, cell attachment, cell proliferation, osteogenic gene expression, bone regeneration, biomechanical stability, and bone-biomaterial contact were evaluated using apatite forming ability test, cell culture assays, and animal experiments. It was found that AcAl and AnH work through completely different routes. While AcAl improved the apatite forming ability of as-manufactured (AsM) specimens, it did not have any positive effect on cell attachment, cell proliferation, and osteogenic gene expression. In contrast, AnH did not improve the apatite forming ability of AsM specimens but showed significantly better cell attachment, cell proliferation, and expression of osteogenic markers. The performance of AlAcH in terms of apatite forming ability and cell response was in between both extremes of AnH and AsM. AcAl resulted in significantly larger volumes of newly formed bone within the pores of the scaffold as compared to AnH. Interestingly, larger volumes of regenerated bone did not translate into improved biomechanical stability as AnH exhibited significantly better biomechanical stability as compared to AcAl suggesting that the beneficial effects of cell-nanotopography modulations somehow surpassed the benefits of improved apatite forming ability. In conclusion, the applied surface treatments have considerable effects on apatite forming ability, cell attachment, cell proliferation, and bone ingrowth of the studied biomaterials. The relationship between these properties and the bone-implant biomechanics is, however, not trivial.