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J Biomed Mater Res A. 2009 Jun 15;89(4):1040-8. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.32061.

Effect of electrospun poly(D,L-lactide) fibrous scaffold with nanoporous surface on attachment of porcine esophageal epithelial cells and protein adsorption.

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  • 1School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798, Singapore.


Electrospun scaffolds have been increasingly used in tissue engineering applications due to their size-scale similarities with native extracellular matrices. Their inherent fibrous features may be important in promoting cell attachment and proliferation on the scaffolds. In this study, we explore the technique of fabricating electrospun fibers with nano-sized porous surfaces and investigate their effects on the attachment of porcine esophageal epithelial cells (PEECs). Porosity was introduced in electrospun poly(D,L-lactide) fibers by creating vapor-induced phase separation conditions during electrospinning. The nanoporous fiber scaffolds were mechanically weaker than the conventional solid fiber scaffolds and solvent-cast films of the same polymer. However, the nanoporosity of the fibers was found to enhance the levels of adsorbed protein from a dilute solution of fetal bovine serum. The amount of protein adsorbed by nanoporous fiber scaffolds was approximately 80% higher than the solid fiber scaffolds. This corresponds to an estimated 62% increase in surface area of the porous fibers than the solid fibers. By comparison, the solvent-cast films adsorbed low levels of protein from the FBS solution. In addition, the porous fibers were found to be advantageous in enhancing initial cell attachment as compared with the solid fibers and solvent-cast films. It was observed that nanoporous fiber scaffolds seeded with PEECs had significantly greater number of viable cells attached than the solid fiber scaffolds after 10 and 24 h in culture. Hence, our results indicate that nanosized porous surfaces on electrospun fibers enhance both protein adsorption and cell attachment. These findings provide a method to improve cell-matrix interactions of electrospun scaffolds for tissue engineering applications.

Copyright 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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