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In vitro dissolution and mechanical behavior ofc-axis preferentially oriented hydroxyapatite thin films fabricated by pulsed laser deposition

Acta Biomaterialia
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2010.02.031
  • Hydroxyapatite
  • Preferred Orientation
  • Pulsed Laser Deposition
  • Mechanical Properties
  • Dissolution
  • Biology
  • Engineering


Abstract Owing to its resemblance to the major inorganic constituent of bone and tooth, hydroxyapatite is recognized as one of the most biocompatible materials and is widely used in systems for bone replacement and regeneration. In this study the pulsed laser deposition technique was chosen to produce hydroxyapatite with different crystallographic orientations in order to investigate some of the material properties, including its in vitro dissolution behavior, as well as mechanical properties. The crystallographic orientations of hydroxyapatite coatings can be carefully controlled, mainly by varying the energy density of the KrF excimer laser (248nm) used for deposition. Nanoindentation results showed that highly c-axis oriented hydroxyapatite coatings have higher hardness and Young’s modulus values compared with the values of randomly oriented coatings. After 24h immersion in simulated physiological solution the overall surface morphology of the highly oriented coatings was dramatically altered. The porosity was drastically increased and sub-micron pores were formed throughout the coatings, whereas the average size of the grains in the coatings was not significantly changed. The composition of the textured hydroxyapatite coatings remained essentially unchanged. Their c-axis texture, on the other hand, was rather enhanced with an increase in immersion time. The c-axis oriented hydroxyapatite surfaces are likely to promote preferentially oriented growth through a cyclic process of dissolution and reprecipitation, followed by homoepitaxial growth. The remarkable morphological and microstructural changes after dissolution suggest a capability of highly textured hydroxyapatite as a tissue engineering scaffold with an interconnecting porous network that may be beneficial for cellular activity.

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