The main purpose of this research work is to study the effect of poly lactic acid (PLA) addition into poly (e-caprolactone) (PCL) matrices, as well the influence of the mixing process on the morphological, thermal, chemical, mechanical and biological performance of the 3D constructs produced with a novel biomanufacturing device (BioCell Printing).
Two mixing processes are used to prepare PCL/PLA blends, namely melt blending and solvent casting. PCL and PCL/PLA scaffolds are produced via BioCell Printing using a 300-μm nozzle, 0/90° lay down pattern and 350-μm pore size. Several techniques such as scanning electron microscopy (SEM), simultaneous thermal analyzer (STA), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), static compression analysis and Alamar BlueTM are used to evaluate scaffold's morphological, thermal, chemical, mechanical and biological properties.
Results show that the addition of PLA to PCL scaffolds strongly improves the biomechanical performance of the constructs. Additionally, polymer blends obtained by solvent casting present better mechanical and biological properties, compared to blends prepared by melt blending.
This paper undertakes a detailed study on the effect of the mixing process on the biomechanical properties of PCL/PLA scaffolds. Results will enable to prepare customized PCL/PLA scaffolds for tissue engineering applications with improved biological and mechanical properties, compared to PCL scaffolds alone. Additionally, the accuracy and reproducibility of by the BioCell Printing enables to modulate the micro/macro architecture of the scaffolds enhancing tissue regeneration.
This work was supported by the Strategic Project (PEST-OE/EME/UI4044/2011) funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology.
Patrício, T., Domingos, M., Gloria, A., D'Amora, U., Coelho, J. and Bártolo, P. (2014), "Fabrication and characterisation of PCL and PCL/PLA scaffolds for tissue engineering", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. 20 No. 2, pp. 145-156. https://doi.org/10.1108/RPJ-04-2012-0037Download as .RIS
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