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Open AccessArticle

Pattern-Dependent Mammalian Cell (Vero) Morphology on Tantalum/Silicon Oxide 3D Nanocomposites

1
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1 Canada
2
Waterloo Institute of Nanotechnology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Materials 2018, 11(8), 1306; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11081306
Received: 28 June 2018 / Revised: 22 July 2018 / Accepted: 26 July 2018 / Published: 28 July 2018
The primary goal of this work was to investigate the resulting morphology of a mammalian cell deposited on three-dimensional nanocomposites constructed of tantalum and silicon oxide. Vero cells were used as a model. The nanocomposite materials contained comb structures with equal-width trenches and lines. High-resolution scanning electron microscopy and fluorescence microscopy were used to image the alignment and elongation of cells. Cells were sensitive to the trench widths, and their observed behavior could be separated into three different regimes corresponding to different spreading mechanism. Cells on fine structures (trench widths of 0.21 to 0.5 μm) formed bridges across trench openings. On larger trenches (from 1 to 10 μm), cells formed a conformal layer matching the surface topographical features. When the trenches were larger than 10 μm, the majority of cells spread like those on blanket tantalum films; however, a significant proportion adhered to the trench sidewalls or bottom corner junctions. Pseudopodia extending from the bulk of the cell were readily observed in this work and a minimum effective diameter of ~50 nm was determined for stable adhesion to a tantalum surface. This sized structure is consistent with the ability of pseudopodia to accommodate ~4–6 integrin molecules. View Full-Text
Keywords: tantalum; mammalian cells; morphology; adhesion; pseudopodia; nanoscale tantalum; mammalian cells; morphology; adhesion; pseudopodia; nanoscale
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MDPI and ACS Style

Moussa, H.I.; Logan, M.; Chan, W.Y.; Wong, K.; Rao, Z.; Aucoin, M.G.; Tsui, T.Y. Pattern-Dependent Mammalian Cell (Vero) Morphology on Tantalum/Silicon Oxide 3D Nanocomposites. Materials 2018, 11, 1306.

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