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J Biomed Mater Res B Appl Biomater. 2012 May;100(4):967-75. doi: 10.1002/jbm.b.32659. Epub 2012 Jan 25.

Bioactive glass microspheres as reinforcement for improving the mechanical properties and biological performance of poly(ε-caprolactone) polymer for bone tissue regeneration.

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Department of Dental Laboratory Science and Engineering, Korea University, Seoul 136-703, Korea.


This study examined the utility of sol-gel-derived bioactive glass microspheres (BGMs) as a reinforcement to improve the mechanical properties and biological performance of poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) polymer. All of the PCL-BGMs composites produced, with a variety of BGMs contents (10, 20, and 30 wt %), showed a uniform distribution of the BGMs in the PCL matrix, particularly owing to their spherical shape and small size. This led to a considerable increase in the elastic modulus from 93 ± 12 MPa to 635 ± 179 MPa with increasing BGMs content from 0 to 30 wt %. Furthermore, the addition of the BGMs to the PCL polymer significantly increased the hydrophilicity of the PCL-BGMs composites, which led to a higher water absorption and degradation rate. The PCL-BGMs composite with a BGMs content of 30 wt % showed vigorous growth of apatite crystals with a high aspect ratio on its surface after soaking in the simulated body fluid for 7 days, resulting in the creation of a porous carbonate hydroxyapatite layer.

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