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Bone growth on Reticulated Vitreous Carbon foam scaffolds and implementation of Cellular Automata modeling as a predictive tool

Authors
Journal
Carbon
0008-6223
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
79
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.carbon.2014.07.052
Disciplines
  • Medicine

Abstract

Abstract There is a lack of biomaterials that may be used to repair defects in bone. Reticulated Vitreous Carbon (RVC) foam use for medical applications has not been realized. Heat treatment of materials has been shown to enhance material structure and porosity is critical to tissue integration. Three types of RVC foams, 10 pores per inch (ppi), 45-ppi and 100-ppi), were heat-treated to 1800°C. Samples were subjected to compression tests and long-term human osteoblast growth. A three dimensional Cellular Automata model was developed to simulate osteoblast growth. Results from characterization revealed that the compressive strength of foam increased more than 300% as pore size decreased from 1.25mm to 0.400mm. Conversely, heat-treated foams exhibited 90% decrease in compressive strength however they displayed 30% increase in osteoblast growth. Additionally, over 28days, all foam scaffolds exhibited a strong capacity to maintain growth, collagen production and mineralization. Moreover, mineralization on the surface of foams increased the maximum compressive strength by more than 100% for 10-ppi, 65% for 45-ppi and 75% for 100-ppi foam. Cellular Automata modeling correlated to experimental results. This study revealed that scaffolds supported osteoblast growth and mineralization and offered mechanical tunability.

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