Use of lecithin to control fibre morphology in electrospun poly (ε- caprolactone) scaffolds for improved tissue engineering applications

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Abstract

We elucidate the effects of incorporating surfactants into electrospun poly (ε-caprolactone) (PCL) scaffolds on network homogeneity, cellular adherence and osteogenic differentiation. Lecithin was added with a range of concentrations to PCL solutions, which were electrospun to yield functionalised scaffolds. Addition of lecithin yielded a dose-dependent reduction in scaffold hydrophobicity, whilst reducing fibre width and hence increasing specific surface area. These changes in scaffold morphology were associated with increased cellular attachment of Saos-2 osteoblasts 3-hours post-seeding. Furthermore, cells on scaffolds showed comparable proliferation over 14 days of incubation to TCP controls. Through model-based interpretation of image analysis combined with gravimetric estimates of porosity, lecithin is shown to reduce scaffold porosity and mean pore size. Additionally, lecithin incorporation is found to reduce fibre curvature, resulting in increased scaffold specific elastic modulus. Low concentrations of lecithin were found to induce upregulation of several genes associated with osteogenesis in primary mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). The results demonstrate that functionalisation of electrospun PCL scaffolds with lecithin can increase the biocompatibility and regenerative potential of these networks for bone tissue engineering applications. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part A
Early online date12 Jun 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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