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Acta Biomater. 2013 Dec;9(12):9508-21. doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2013.07.036. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

Collagen hydrogels incorporated with surface-aminated mesoporous nanobioactive glass: Improvement of physicochemical stability and mechanical properties is effective for hard tissue engineering.

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Institute of Tissue Regeneration Engineering (ITREN), Dankook University, Cheonan 330-714, South Korea; Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Laboratory, Department of Nanobiomedical Science & WCU Research Center, Dankook University, Cheonan 330-714, South Korea; Glass Research Department, National Research Center, Cairo, Egypt.


Collagen (Col) hydrogels have poor physicochemical and mechanical properties and are susceptible to substantial shrinkage during cell culture, which limits their potential applications in hard tissue engineering. Here, we developed novel nanocomposite hydrogels made of collagen and mesoporous bioactive glass nanoparticles (mBGns) with surface amination, and addressed the effects of mBGn addition (Col:mBG = 2:1, 1:1 and 1:2) and its surface amination on the physicochemical and mechanical properties of the hydrogels. The amination of mBGn was shown to enable chemical bonding with collagen molecules. As a result, the nanocomposite hydrogels exhibited a significantly improved physicochemical and mechanical stability. The hydrolytic and enzymatic degradation of the Col-mBGn hydrogels were slowed down due to the incorporation of mBGn and its surface amination. The mechanical properties of the hydrogels, specifically the resistance to loading as well as the stiffness, significantly increased with the addition of mBGn and its aminated form, as assessed by a dynamic mechanical analysis. Mesenchymal stem cells cultivated within the Col-mBGn hydrogels were highly viable, with enhanced cytoskeletal extensions, due to the addition of surface aminated mBGn. While the Col hydrogel showed extensive shrinkage (down to ∼20% of initial size) during a few days of culture, the shrinkage of the mBGn-added hydrogel was substantially reduced, and the aminated mBGn-added hydrogel had no observable shrinkage over 21 days. Results demonstrated the effective roles of aminated mBGn in significantly improving the physicochemical and mechanical properties of Col hydrogel, which are ultimately favorable for applications in stem cell culture for bone tissue engineering.


Bioactive glass; Bone tissue engineering; Collagen hydrogel; Nanoparticles; Surface functionalization

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