Open AccessReview
Artificial Red Blood Cells as Potential Photosensitizers in Dye Laser Treatment Against Port-Wine Stains
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(2), 14; doi:10.3390/jfb8020014 -
Abstract
We suggest a novel method that uses artificial blood cells (hemoglobin vesicles, Hb-Vs) as photosensitizers in dye laser treatment (at 595-nm wavelength) for port-wine stains (i.e., capillary malformations presenting as red birthmarks) based on the results of animal experiments. As compared with human
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We suggest a novel method that uses artificial blood cells (hemoglobin vesicles, Hb-Vs) as photosensitizers in dye laser treatment (at 595-nm wavelength) for port-wine stains (i.e., capillary malformations presenting as red birthmarks) based on the results of animal experiments. As compared with human red blood cells, Hb-Vs have the same absorbance of 595 nm wavelength light and produce the same level of heat following dye laser irradiation. Small sized Hb-Vs (250 nm) distribute in the plasma phase in blood and tend to flow in the marginal zone of microvessels. Intravenous injections of Hb-Vs caused the dilatation of microvessels, and dye laser treatment with Hb-Vs destroyed the vessel wall effectively. Following the intravenous injection of Hb-Vs, the microvessels contained more Hb that absorbed laser photons and produced heat. This extra Hb tended to flow near the endothelial cells, which were the target of the laser treatment. These attributes of Hb-Vs will potentially contribute to enhancing the efficacy of dye laser treatment for port-wine stains. Hemoglobin is a type of porphyrin. Thus, our proposed treatment may have aspects of photodynamic therapy using porphyrin that leads to a cytotoxicity effect by active oxygen. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperCommunication
Patient Education for Endoscopic Sinus Surgery: Preliminary Experience Using 3D-Printed Clinical Imaging Data
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(2), 13; doi:10.3390/jfb8020013 -
Abstract
Within the Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) medical space, a relatively small fraction of patients follow through with elective surgeries to fix ailments such as a deviated septum or occluded sinus passage. Patient understanding of their diagnosis and treatment plan is integral to
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Within the Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) medical space, a relatively small fraction of patients follow through with elective surgeries to fix ailments such as a deviated septum or occluded sinus passage. Patient understanding of their diagnosis and treatment plan is integral to compliance, which ultimately yields improved medical outcomes and better quality of life. Here we report the usage of advanced, polyjet 3D printing methods to develop a multimaterial replica of human nasal sinus anatomy, derived from clinical X-ray computed tomography (CT) data, to be used as an educational aid during physician consultation. The final patient education model was developed over several iterations to optimize material properties, anatomical accuracy and overall display. A two-arm, single-center, randomized, prospective study was then performed in which 50 ENT surgical candidates (and an associated control group, n = 50) were given an explanation of their anatomy, disease state, and treatment options using the education model as an aid. Statistically significant improvements in patient ratings of their physician’s explanation of their treatment options (p = 0.020), self-rated anatomical understanding (p = 0.043), self-rated understanding of disease state (p = 0.016), and effectiveness of the visualization (p = 0.007) were noted from the population that viewed the 3D education model, indicating it is an effective tool which ENT surgeons may use to educate and interact with patients. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Endovascular Embolization by Transcatheter Delivery of Particles: Past, Present, and Future
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(2), 12; doi:10.3390/jfb8020012 -
Abstract
Minimally invasive techniques to occlude flow within blood vessels, initially pioneered in the 1970s with autologous materials and subsequently advanced with increasingly sophisticated engineered biomaterials, are routinely performed for a variety of medical conditions. Contemporary interventional radiologists have at their disposal a wide
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Minimally invasive techniques to occlude flow within blood vessels, initially pioneered in the 1970s with autologous materials and subsequently advanced with increasingly sophisticated engineered biomaterials, are routinely performed for a variety of medical conditions. Contemporary interventional radiologists have at their disposal a wide armamentarium of occlusive agents to treat a range of disease processes through a small incision in the skin. In this review, we provide a historical perspective on endovascular embolization tools, summarize the current state-of-the-art, and highlight burgeoning technologies that promise to advance the field in the near future. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Comparison of the Pharmacokinetic Properties of Hemoglobin-Based Oxygen Carriers
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 11; doi:10.3390/jfb8010011 -
Abstract
Hemoglobin (Hb) is an ideal material for use in the development of an oxygen carrier in view of its innate biological properties. However, the vascular retention of free Hb is too short to permit a full therapeutic effect because Hb is rapidly cleared
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Hemoglobin (Hb) is an ideal material for use in the development of an oxygen carrier in view of its innate biological properties. However, the vascular retention of free Hb is too short to permit a full therapeutic effect because Hb is rapidly cleared from the kidney via glomerular filtration or from the liver via the haptogloblin-CD 163 pathway when free Hb is administered in the blood circulation. Attempts have been made to develop alternate acellular and cellular types of Hb based oxygen carriers (HBOCs), in which Hb is processed via various routes in order to regulate its pharmacokinetic properties. These HBOCs have been demonstrated to have superior pharmacokinetic properties including a longer half-life than the Hb molecule in preclinical and clinical trials. The present review summarizes and compares the pharmacokinetic properties of acellular and cellular type HBOCs that have been developed through different approaches, such as polymerization, PEGylation, cross-linking, and encapsulation. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Overview of Potential Clinical Applications of Hemoglobin Vesicles (HbV) as Artificial Red Cells, Evidenced by Preclinical Studies of the Academic Research Consortium
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 10; doi:10.3390/jfb8010010 -
Abstract
Hemoglobin (Hb) is the most abundant protein in whole blood. This fact implies that the oxygen binding and releasing function of Hb is the most vital for sustaining life. All Hb is compartmentalized in red blood cells (RBCs) with corpuscular Hb concentration of
[...] Read more.
Hemoglobin (Hb) is the most abundant protein in whole blood. This fact implies that the oxygen binding and releasing function of Hb is the most vital for sustaining life. All Hb is compartmentalized in red blood cells (RBCs) with corpuscular Hb concentration of about 35 g/dL, covered with a thin biomembrane. In spite of its abundance, Hb sometimes shows toxicity once it is leaked from RBCs. The shielding effect of the RBC membrane is physiologically important. Based on this structural importance, we have studied artificial red cells (Hb vesicles, HbV) as artificial oxygen carriers, which encapsulate a purified and concentrated Hb solution in phospholipid vesicles, mimicking the cellular structure of RBCs. Our academic research consortium has clarified the safety and efficacy of this HbV, aiming at clinical applications. Because of some superior characteristics to those of RBCs, HbV has the potential for use not only as a transfusion alternative but also for oxygen and carbon monoxide therapeutics, perfusate for transplant organs, and photosensitizer. In this review paper, such potential applications are summarized. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Induction of Low-Level Hydrogen Peroxide Generation by Unbleached Cotton Nonwovens as Potential Wound Dressing Materials
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 9; doi:10.3390/jfb8010009 -
Abstract
Greige cotton is an intact plant fiber. The cuticle and primary cell wall near the outer surface of the cotton fiber contains pectin, peroxidases, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and trace metals, which are associated with hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) generation during
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Greige cotton is an intact plant fiber. The cuticle and primary cell wall near the outer surface of the cotton fiber contains pectin, peroxidases, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and trace metals, which are associated with hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) generation during cotton fiber development. Traditionally, the processing of cotton into gauze involves scouring and bleaching processes that remove the components in the cuticle and primary cell wall. The use of unbleached, greige cotton fibers in dressings, has been relatively unexplored. We have recently determined that greige cotton can generate low levels of H2O2 (5–50 micromolar). Because this may provide advantages for the use of greige cotton-based wound dressings, we have begun to examine this in more detail. Both brown and white cotton varieties were examined in this study. Brown cotton was found to have a relatively higher hydrogen peroxide generation and demonstrated different capacities for H2O2 generation, varying from 1 to 35 micromolar. The H2O2 generation capacities of white and brown nonwoven greige cottons were also examined at different process stages with varying chronology and source parameters, from field to nonwoven fiber. The primary cell wall of nonwoven brown cotton appeared very intact, as observed by transmission electron microscopy, and possessed higher pectin levels. The levels of pectin, SOD, and polyphenolics, correlated with H2O2 generation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Fabrication and Optimal Design of Biodegradable Polymeric Stents for Aneurysms Treatments
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 8; doi:10.3390/jfb8010008 -
Abstract
An aneurysm is a balloon-like bulge in the wall of blood vessels, occurring in major arteries of the heart and brain. Biodegradable polymeric stent-assisted coiling is expected to be the ideal treatment of wide-neck complex aneurysms. This paper presents the development of methods
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An aneurysm is a balloon-like bulge in the wall of blood vessels, occurring in major arteries of the heart and brain. Biodegradable polymeric stent-assisted coiling is expected to be the ideal treatment of wide-neck complex aneurysms. This paper presents the development of methods to fabricate and optimally design biodegradable polymeric stents for aneurysms treatment. Firstly, a dispensing-based rapid prototyping (DBRP) system was developed to fabricate coil and zigzag structures of biodegradable polymeric stents. Then, compression testing was carried out to characterize the radial deformation of the stents fabricated with the coil or zigzag structure. The results illustrated the stent with a zigzag structure has a stronger radial stiffness than the one with a coil structure. On this basis, the stent with a zigzag structure was chosen for the development of a finite element model for simulating the real compression tests. The result showed the finite element model of biodegradable polymeric stents is acceptable within a range of radial deformation around 20%. Furthermore, the optimization of the zigzag structure was performed with ANSYS DesignXplorer, and the results indicated that the total deformation could be decreased by 35.7% by optimizing the structure parameters, which would represent a significant advance of the radial stiffness of biodegradable polymeric stents. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Aloe Vera for Tissue Engineering Applications
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 6; doi:10.3390/jfb8010006 -
Abstract
Aloe vera, also referred as Aloe barbadensis Miller, is a succulent plant widely used for biomedical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic applications. Aloe vera has been used for thousands of years. However, recent significant advances have been made in the development of aloe vera for
[...] Read more.
Aloe vera, also referred as Aloe barbadensis Miller, is a succulent plant widely used for biomedical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic applications. Aloe vera has been used for thousands of years. However, recent significant advances have been made in the development of aloe vera for tissue engineering applications. Aloe vera has received considerable attention in tissue engineering due to its biodegradability, biocompatibility, and low toxicity properties. Aloe vera has been reported to have many biologically active components. The bioactive components of aloe vera have effective antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immune-modulatory effects that promote both tissue regeneration and growth. The aloe vera plant, its bioactive components, extraction and processing, and tissue engineering prospects are reviewed in this article. The use of aloe vera as tissue engineering scaffolds, gels, and films is discussed, with a special focus on electrospun nanofibers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Atomic Force Microscopy: A Powerful Tool to Address Scaffold Design in Tissue Engineering
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 7; doi:10.3390/jfb8010007 -
Abstract
Functional polymers currently represent a basic component of a large range of biological and biomedical applications including molecular release, tissue engineering, bio-sensing and medical imaging. Advancements in these fields are driven by the use of a wide set of biodegradable polymers with controlled
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Functional polymers currently represent a basic component of a large range of biological and biomedical applications including molecular release, tissue engineering, bio-sensing and medical imaging. Advancements in these fields are driven by the use of a wide set of biodegradable polymers with controlled physical and bio-interactive properties. In this context, microscopy techniques such as Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) are emerging as fundamental tools to deeply investigate morphology and structural properties at micro and sub-micrometric scale, in order to evaluate the in time relationship between physicochemical properties of biomaterials and biological response. In particular, AFM is not only a mere tool for screening surface topography, but may offer a significant contribution to understand surface and interface properties, thus concurring to the optimization of biomaterials performance, processes, physical and chemical properties at the micro and nanoscale. This is possible by capitalizing the recent discoveries in nanotechnologies applied to soft matter such as atomic force spectroscopy to measure surface forces through force curves. By tip-sample local interactions, several information can be collected such as elasticity, viscoelasticity, surface charge densities and wettability. This paper overviews recent developments in AFM technology and imaging techniques by remarking differences in operational modes, the implementation of advanced tools and their current application in biomaterials science, in terms of characterization of polymeric devices in different forms (i.e., fibres, films or particles). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Bioactive Polymeric Materials for Tissue Repair
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 4; doi:10.3390/jfb8010004 -
Abstract
Bioactive polymeric materials based on calcium phosphates have tremendous appeal for hard tissue repair because of their well-documented biocompatibility. Amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP)-based ones additionally protect against unwanted demineralization and actively support regeneration of hard tissue minerals. Our group has been investigating the
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Bioactive polymeric materials based on calcium phosphates have tremendous appeal for hard tissue repair because of their well-documented biocompatibility. Amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP)-based ones additionally protect against unwanted demineralization and actively support regeneration of hard tissue minerals. Our group has been investigating the structure/composition/property relationships of ACP polymeric composites for the last two decades. Here, we present ACP’s dispersion in a polymer matrix and the fine-tuning of the resin affects the physicochemical, mechanical, and biological properties of ACP polymeric composites. These studies illustrate how the filler/resin interface and monomer/polymer molecular structure affect the material’s critical properties, such as ion release and mechanical strength. We also present evidence of the remineralization efficacy of ACP composites when exposed to accelerated acidic challenges representative of oral environment conditions. The utility of ACP has recently been extended to include airbrushing as a platform technology for fabrication of nanofiber scaffolds. These studies, focused on assessing the feasibility of incorporating ACP into various polymer fibers, also included the release kinetics of bioactive calcium and phosphate ions from nanofibers and evaluate the biorelevance of the polymeric ACP fiber networks. We also discuss the potential for future integration of the existing ACP scaffolds into therapeutic delivery systems used in the precision medicine field. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Anti-Inflammatory and Vasodilating Effects of Three Selected Dietary Organic Sulfur Compounds from Allium Species
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 5; doi:10.3390/jfb8010005 -
Abstract
The anti-inflammatory and vasodilating effects of three selected dietary organic sulfur compounds (OSC), including diallyl disulfide (DADS), dimethyl disulfide (DMDS), and propyl disulfide (PDS), from Allium species were investigated. In the anti-inflammatory activity assay, the three OSC demonstrated significant inhibition of nitric oxide
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The anti-inflammatory and vasodilating effects of three selected dietary organic sulfur compounds (OSC), including diallyl disulfide (DADS), dimethyl disulfide (DMDS), and propyl disulfide (PDS), from Allium species were investigated. In the anti-inflammatory activity assay, the three OSC demonstrated significant inhibition of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production in LPS-induced RAW 264.7 cells. The expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase (COX-2) in activated RAW 264.7 cells was inhibited by the three OSC, indicating that the three OSC prevented the LPS-induced inflammatory response in RAW 264.7 cells. For the vasodilative assay, the three OSC were ineffective in producing NO in SVEC4-10 cells, but they did enhance prostacyclin (PGI2) production. The expression of COX-2 in SVEC4-10 cells was activated by DADS and DMDS. Pretreatment of SVEC4-10 cells with the three OSC decreased ROS generation in H2O2-induced SVEC4-10 cells. In addition, the three OSC significantly inhibited angiotensin-I converting enzyme (ACE). The up-regulation of PGI2 production and COX-2 expression by DADS and DMDS and the reduction of ROS generation by DADS, DMDS, and PDS in SVEC4-10 cells contributed to the vasodilative effect of the three OSC. Collectively, these findings suggest that DADS, DMDS, and PDS are potential anti-inflammatory and vasodilative mediators. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Minimizing Skin Scarring through Biomaterial Design
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 3; doi:10.3390/jfb8010003 -
Abstract
Wound healing continues to be a major burden to patients, though research in the field has expanded significantly. Due to an aging population and increasing comorbid conditions, the cost of chronic wounds is expected to increase for patients and the U.S. healthcare system
[...] Read more.
Wound healing continues to be a major burden to patients, though research in the field has expanded significantly. Due to an aging population and increasing comorbid conditions, the cost of chronic wounds is expected to increase for patients and the U.S. healthcare system alike. With this knowledge, the number of engineered products to facilitate wound healing has also increased dramatically, with some already in clinical use. In this review, the major biomaterials used to facilitate skin wound healing will be examined, with particular attention allocated to the science behind their development. Experimental therapies will also be evaluated. Full article
Open AccessEditorial
Acknowledgement to Reviewers of JFB in 2016
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 2; doi:10.3390/jfb8010002 -
Abstract The editors of Jfb would like to express their sincere gratitude to the following reviewers for assessing manuscripts in 2016.[...] Full article
Open AccessArticle
Optimization of Polymer-ECM Composite Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering: Effect of Cells and Culture Conditions on Polymeric Nanofiber Mats
J. Funct. Biomater. 2017, 8(1), 1; doi:10.3390/jfb8010001 -
Abstract
The design of composite tissue scaffolds containing an extracellular matrix (ECM) and synthetic polymer fibers is a new approach to create bioactive scaffolds that can enhance cell function. Currently, studies investigating the effects of ECM-deposition and decellularization on polymer degradation are still lacking,
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The design of composite tissue scaffolds containing an extracellular matrix (ECM) and synthetic polymer fibers is a new approach to create bioactive scaffolds that can enhance cell function. Currently, studies investigating the effects of ECM-deposition and decellularization on polymer degradation are still lacking, as are data on optimizing the stability of the ECM-containing composite scaffolds during prolonged cell culture. In this study, we develop fibrous scaffolds using three polymer compositions, representing slow (E0000), medium (E0500), and fast (E1000) degrading materials, to investigate the stability, degradation, and mechanics of the scaffolds during ECM deposition and decellularization, and during the complete cellularization-decell-recell cycle. We report data on percent molecular weight (% Mw) retention of polymeric fiber mats, changes in scaffold stiffness, ECM deposition, and the presence of fibronectin after decellularization. We concluded that the fast degrading E1000 (Mw retention ≤ 50% after 28 days) was not sufficiently stable to allow scaffold handling after 28 days in culture, while the slow degradation of E0000 (Mw retention ≥ 80% in 28 days) did not allow deposited ECM to replace the polymer support. The scaffolds made from medium degrading E0500 (Mw retention about 60% at 28 days) allowed the gradual replacement of the polymer network with cell-derived ECM while maintaining the polymer network support. Thus, polymers with an intermediate rate of degradation, maintaining good scaffold handling properties after 28 days in culture, seem best suited for creating ECM-polymer composite scaffolds. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Use of Micropatterned Thin Film Nitinol in Carotid Stents to Augment Embolic Protection
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 34; doi:10.3390/jfb7040034 -
Abstract
Stenting is an alternative to endarterectomy for the treatment of carotid artery stenosis. However, stenting is associated with a higher risk of procedural stroke secondary to distal thromboembolism. Hybrid stents with a micromesh layer have been proposed to address this complication. We developed
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Stenting is an alternative to endarterectomy for the treatment of carotid artery stenosis. However, stenting is associated with a higher risk of procedural stroke secondary to distal thromboembolism. Hybrid stents with a micromesh layer have been proposed to address this complication. We developed a micropatterned thin film nitinol (M-TFN) covered stent designed to prevent thromboembolism during carotid intervention. This innovation may obviate the need or work synergistically with embolic protection devices. The proposed double layered stent is low-profile, thromboresistant, and covered with a M-TFN that can be fabricated with fenestrations of varying geometries and sizes. The M-TFN was created in multiple geometries, dimensions, and porosities by sputter deposition. The efficiency of various M-TFN to capture embolic particles was evaluated in different atherosclerotic carotid stenotic conditions through in vitro tests. The covered stent prevented emboli dislodgement in the range of 70%–96% during 30 min duration tests. In vitro vascular cell growth study results showed that endothelial cell elongation, alignment and growth behaviour silhouettes significantly enhance, specifically on the diamond-shape M-TFN, with the dimensions of 145 µm × 20 µm and a porosity of 32%. Future studies will require in vivo testing. Our results demonstrate that M-TFN has a promising potential for carotid artery stenting. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Responses of Vascular Endothelial Cells to Photoembossed Topographies on Poly(Methyl Methacrylate) Films
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 33; doi:10.3390/jfb7040033 -
Abstract
Failures of vascular grafts are normally caused by the lack of a durable and adherent endothelium covering the graft which leads to thrombus and neointima formation. A promising approach to overcome these issues is to create a functional, quiescent monolayer of endothelial cells
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Failures of vascular grafts are normally caused by the lack of a durable and adherent endothelium covering the graft which leads to thrombus and neointima formation. A promising approach to overcome these issues is to create a functional, quiescent monolayer of endothelial cells on the surface of implants. The present study reports for the first time on the use of photoembossing as a technique to create polymer films with different topographical features for improved cell interaction in biomedical applications. For this, a photopolymer is created by mixing poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) and trimethylolpropane ethoxylate triacrylate (TPETA) at a 1:1 ratio. This photopolymer demonstrated an improvement in biocompatibility over PMMA which is already known to be biocompatible and has been extensively used in the biomedical field. Additionally, photoembossed films showed significantly improved cell attachment and proliferation compared to their non-embossed counterparts. Surface texturing consisted of grooves of different pitches (6, 10, and 20 µm) and heights (1 µm and 2.5 µm). The 20 µm pitch photoembossed films significantly accelerated cell migration in a wound-healing assay, while films with a 6 µm pitch inhibited cells from detaching. Additionally, the relief structure obtained by photoembossing also changed the surface wettability of the substrates. Photoembossed PMMA-TPETA systems benefited from this change as it improved their water contact angle to around 70°, making it well suited for cell adhesion. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Silica-Based and Borate-Based, Titania-Containing Bioactive Coatings Characterization: Critical Strain Energy Release Rate, Residual Stresses, Hardness, and Thermal Expansion
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 32; doi:10.3390/jfb7040032 -
Abstract
Silica-based and borate-based glass series, with increasing amounts of TiO2 incorporated, are characterized in terms of their mechanical properties relevant to their use as metallic coating materials. It is observed that borate-based glasses exhibit CTE (Coefficient of Thermal Expansion) closer to the
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Silica-based and borate-based glass series, with increasing amounts of TiO2 incorporated, are characterized in terms of their mechanical properties relevant to their use as metallic coating materials. It is observed that borate-based glasses exhibit CTE (Coefficient of Thermal Expansion) closer to the substrate’s (Ti6Al4V) CTE, translating into higher mode I critical strain energy release rates of glasses and compressive residual stresses and strains at the coating/substrate interface, outperforming the silica-based glasses counterparts. An increase in the content of TiO2 in the glasses results in an increase in the mode I critical strain energy release rate for both the bulk glass and for the coating/substrate system, proving that the addition of TiO2 to the glass structure enhances its toughness, while decreasing its bulk hardness. Borate-based glass BRT3, with 15 mol % TiO2 incorporated, exhibits superior properties overall compared to the other proposed glasses in this work, as well as 45S5 Bioglass® and Pyrex. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Characterization and Schwann Cell Seeding of up to 15.0 cm Long Spider Silk Nerve Conduits for Reconstruction of Peripheral Nerve Defects
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 30; doi:10.3390/jfb7040030 -
Abstract
Nerve reconstruction of extended nerve defect injuries still remains challenging with respect to therapeutic options. The gold standard in nerve surgery is the autologous nerve graft. Due to the limitation of adequate donor nerves, surgical alternatives are needed. Nerve grafts made out of
[...] Read more.
Nerve reconstruction of extended nerve defect injuries still remains challenging with respect to therapeutic options. The gold standard in nerve surgery is the autologous nerve graft. Due to the limitation of adequate donor nerves, surgical alternatives are needed. Nerve grafts made out of either natural or artificial materials represent this alternative. Several biomaterials are being explored and preclinical and clinical applications are ongoing. Unfortunately, nerve conduits with successful enhancement of axonal regeneration for nerve defects measuring over 4.0 cm are sparse and no conduits are available for nerve defects extending to 10.0 cm. In this study, spider silk nerve conduits seeded with Schwann cells were investigated for in vitro regeneration on defects measuring 4.0 cm, 10.0 cm and 15.0 cm in length. Schwann cells (SCs) were isolated, cultured and purified. Cell purity was determined by immunofluorescence. Nerve grafts were constructed out of spider silk from Nephila edulis and decellularized ovine vessels. Finally, spider silk implants were seeded with purified Schwann cells. Cell attachment was observed within the first hour. After 7 and 21 days of culture, immunofluorescence for viability and determination of Schwann cell proliferation and migration throughout the conduits was performed. Analyses revealed that SCs maintained viable (>95%) throughout the conduits independent of construct length. SC proliferation on the spider silk was determined from day 7 to day 21 with a proliferation index of 49.42% arithmetically averaged over all conduits. This indicates that spider silk nerve conduits represent a favorable environment for SC attachment, proliferation and distribution over a distance of least 15.0 cm in vitro. Thus spider silk nerve implants are a highly adequate biomaterial for nerve reconstruction. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
In Vitro Study of a Superhydrophilic Thin Film Nitinol Endograft that is Electrostatically Endothelialized in the Catheter Prior to the Endovascular Procedure
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 31; doi:10.3390/jfb7040031 -
Abstract
Electrostatic endothelial cell seeding has evolved as an exceptional technique to improve the efficiency of cell seeding in terms of frequency of attached cells and the amount of cell adhesion for the treatment of vascular diseases. In the recent times, both untreated and
[...] Read more.
Electrostatic endothelial cell seeding has evolved as an exceptional technique to improve the efficiency of cell seeding in terms of frequency of attached cells and the amount of cell adhesion for the treatment of vascular diseases. In the recent times, both untreated and superhydrophilic thin film nitinol (TFN) have exhibited strong prospects as substrates for creation of small-diameter endovascular grafts due to their hallmark properties of superelasticity, ultra low-profile character, and grown hemocompatible oxide layer with the presence of a uniform endothelial layer on the surface. The purpose of the current study is to understand the effects of endothelial cell seeding parameters (i.e., applied voltage, incubation time, substrate chemistry, and cell suspension solution) to investigate the cell seeding phenomenon and to improve the cell adhesion and growth on the TFN surface under electrostatic transplantation. Both parallel plate and cylindrical capacitor models were used along with the Taguchi Design of Experiment (DOE) methods to design in vitro test parameters. A novel in vitro system for a cylindrical capacitor model was created using a micro flow pump, micro incubation system, and silicone tubings. The augmented endothelialization on thin film nitinol was developed to determine the effect of cell seeding and deployed in a 6 Fr intravascular catheter setup. Cell viability along with morphology and proliferation of adhered cells were evaluated using fluorescent and scanning electron microscopy. Our results demonstrated that the maximum number of cells attached on STFN in the catheter was observed in 5 V with the 2 h exposure of in the cell culture medium (CCM) solution. The condition showed 5 V voltage with 0.68 × 10−6 µC electrostatic charge and 5.11 V·mm−1 electric field. Our findings have first demonstrated that the electrostatic endothelialization on the superhydrophilic thin film nitinol endograft within the catheter prior to the endovascular procedure could enhance the biocompatibility for low-profile endovascular applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Cerebral Microvascular and Systemic Effects Following Intravenous Administration of the Perfluorocarbon Emulsion Perftoran
J. Funct. Biomater. 2016, 7(4), 29; doi:10.3390/jfb7040029 -
Abstract
Oxygen-carrying perfluorocarbon (PFC) fluids have the potential to increase tissue oxygenation during hypoxic states and to reduce ischemic cell death. Regulatory approval of oxygen therapeutics was halted due to concerns over vasoconstrictive side effects. The goal of this study was to assess the
[...] Read more.
Oxygen-carrying perfluorocarbon (PFC) fluids have the potential to increase tissue oxygenation during hypoxic states and to reduce ischemic cell death. Regulatory approval of oxygen therapeutics was halted due to concerns over vasoconstrictive side effects. The goal of this study was to assess the potential vasoactive properties of Perftoran by measuring brain pial arteriolar diameters in a healthy rat model. Perftoran, crystalloid (saline) or colloid (Hextend) solutions were administered as four sequential 30 min intravenous (IV) infusions, thus allowing an evaluation of cumulative dose-dependent effects. There were no overall changes in diameters of small-sized (<50 μm) pial arterioles within the Perftoran group, while both saline and Hextend groups exhibited vasoconstriction. Medium-sized arterioles (50–100 μm) showed minor (~8–9%) vasoconstriction within saline and Hextend groups and only ~5% vasoconstriction within the Perftoran group. For small- and medium-sized pial arterioles, the mean percent change in vessel diameters was not different among the groups. Although there was a tendency for arterial blood pressures to increase with Perftoran, pressures were not different from the other two groups. These data show that Perftoran, when administered to healthy anesthetized rats, does not cause additional vasoconstriction in cerebral pial arterioles or increase systemic blood pressure compared with saline or Hextend. Full article
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