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A Biological Study of Composites Based on the Blends of Nanohydroxyapatite, Silk Fibroin and Chitosan

In this work, the biological properties of three-dimensional scaffolds based on a blend of nanohydroxyapatite (nHA), silk fibroin (SF), and chitosan (CTS), were prepared using a lyophilization technique with various weight ratios: 10:45:45, 15:15:70, 15:70:15, 20:40:40, 40:30:30, and 70:15:15 nHA:SF:CTS, respectively. The basic 3D scaffolds were obtained from 5% (w/w) chitosan and 5% silk fibroin solutions and then nHA was added. The morphology and physicochemical properties of scaffolds were studied and compared. A biological test was performed to study the growth and osteogenic differentiation of human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). It was found that the addition of chitosan increases the resistance properties and extends the degradation time of materials. In vitro studies with human mesenchymal stem cells found a high degree of biotolerance for the materials produced, especially for the 20:40:40 and 15:70:15 (nHa:SF:CTS) ratios. The presence of silk fibroin and the elongated shape of the pores positively influenced the differentiation of cells into osteogenic cells. By taking advantage of the differentiation/proliferation cues offered by individual components, the composites based on the nanohydroxyapatite, silk fibroin, and chitosan scaffold may be suitable for bone tissue engineering, and possibly offer an alternative to the widespread use of collagen materials.

Publication date: 08/08/2022

Author: Anna Tuwalska

Reference: doi: 10.3390/ma15155444

MDPI (materials)


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870292.