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Nanomaterials 2019, 9(1), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9010078

Three-Dimensional Stable Alginate-Nanocellulose Gels for Biomedical Applications: Towards Tunable Mechanical Properties and Cell Growing

1
REDEMAT, Federal University of Ouro Preto, Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais 35400-000, Brazil
2
Department of Chemistry, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 31270-901, Brazil
3
Empa, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, Applied Wood Materials Laboratory, 8600 Dübendorf, Switzerland
4
Faculty of Dentistry, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 31270-901, Brazil
5
Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering Federal, University of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 31270-901, Brazil
6
DFQM, Federal University of São Carlos, Sorocaba, São Paulo1 8052-780, Brazil
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 December 2018 / Revised: 27 December 2018 / Accepted: 3 January 2019 / Published: 8 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cellulose Nanomaterials)
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Abstract

Hydrogels have been studied as promising materials in different biomedical applications such as cell culture in tissue engineering or in wound healing. In this work, we synthesized different nanocellulose-alginate hydrogels containing cellulose nanocrystals, TEMPO-oxidized cellulose nanocrystals (CNCTs), cellulose nanofibers or TEMPO-oxidized cellulose nanofibers (CNFTs). The hydrogels were freeze-dried and named as gels. The nanocelluloses and the gels were characterized by different techniques such as Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and dynamic mechanical thermal analysis (DMTA), while the biological features were characterized by cytotoxicity and cell growth assays. The addition of CNCTs or CNFTs in alginate gels contributed to the formation of porous structure (diameter of pores in the range between 40 and 150 μm). TEMPO-oxidized cellulose nanofibers have proven to play a crucial role in improving the dimensional stability of the samples when compared to the pure alginate gels, mainly after a thermal post-treatment of these gels containing 50 wt % of CNFT, which significantly increased the Ca2+ crosslinking density in the gel structure. The morphological characteristics, the mechanical properties, and the non-cytotoxic behavior of the CNFT-alginate gels improved bioadhesion, growth, and proliferation of the cells onto the gels. Thus, the alginate-nanocellulose gels might find applications in tissue engineering field, as for instance, in tissue repair or wound healing applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: alginate; cellulose nanocrystals; cellulose nanofibers; crosslinking; hydrogels; cell viability alginate; cellulose nanocrystals; cellulose nanofibers; crosslinking; hydrogels; cell viability
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Siqueira, P.; Siqueira, É.; De Lima, A.E.; Siqueira, G.; Pinzón-Garcia, A.D.; Lopes, A.P.; Segura, M.E.C.; Isaac, A.; Pereira, F.V.; Botaro, V.R. Three-Dimensional Stable Alginate-Nanocellulose Gels for Biomedical Applications: Towards Tunable Mechanical Properties and Cell Growing. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 78.

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