(1) Background. Titanium is characterized by its biocompatibility and resistance to stress and fatigue. Treatment with argon plasma may favour growth of human osteoblasts with respect to cell adhesion and proliferation. The aim of this study was to analyse the behaviour of human osteoblasts (MG-63) on Grade IV and V titanium possessing a sand-blasted, acid-etched (SLA) surface. SLA is a widely used surface treatment to create micro- and macroretentions to enhance osteoconductive properties on the surface. (2) Methods. One group of each grade of titanium was decontaminated with argon plasma and compared. On each disc, 20 × 104
cells were cultivated for morphological analysis, study of cell viability (regarding a negative control [100% viability]) and mitochondrial energy balance. (3) Results. At 24 h titanium treated with SLA showed a higher percentage of cell viability (47.3 ± 8.1%) compared to titanium IV treated with argon plasma, which presented a percentage of 79.1 ± 1.1%. Grade V titanium treated with argon plasma presented a higher viability percentage 91.3 ± 3.0% whereas nontreated Grade V titanium presented 53.3 ± 4.0%. Cells cultivated on the surfaces with an argon-plasma treatment were enlarged in comparison to non-treated discs. The cells with smaller circularity with a greater spread and spindle shape were the ones cultivated on the Grade V titanium surface. Cells seeded on treated titanium IV and titanium V, treated or not, showed higher mitochondrial activity over nontreated titanium IV. (4) Conclusions. Cells cultivated on those Grade V titanium discs that were decontaminated with argon plasma presented higher levels of cell adhesion and proliferation, lower mitochondrial damage and a higher mean cell area compared to those not decontaminated with argon plasma.
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