Controlled degradation and macrophage responses of a fluoride-treated polycaprolactone

J. E. Gough, P. Christian, J. Unsworth, M. P. Evans, C. A. Scotchford, I. A. Jones

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    We have developed a new bone replacement material based on polycaprolactone (PCL), which can act as a suitable matrix for monomer transfer molding of degradable composites. A boron trifluoride catalyst with glycerol additive was used to produce PCL with a degradation rate that can be altered by treatment with fluoride ions. The effect of cations on the degradation of the polymer and macrophage cell responses are discussed. We found that treatment with fluoride ions reduced the degradation rate. No significant difference between these three fluorides was observed although a general trend was seen where KF-treated PCL appeared to degrade slower than NaF-treated PCL which was slower than NH4F-treated PCL. Variation in solubilities of the salts was observed where the K+ cation had the highest solubility and the Na+ cation had the lowest solubility, which suggests that NaF was able to degrade the polymer more efficiently than the other fluorides. No significant macrophage activation was observed after culture on the polymer surfaces as determined by peroxide and IL-1β release, whereas some activation occurred after culture in degradation products. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)17-25
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part A
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2004


    • Bone
    • Degradation
    • Fluorides
    • Macrophages
    • Polycaprolactone


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