3D printable nano porose Cellophil® membranes with nano hydroxyapatite gradient for tissue regeneration applications
3D-printing revolutionizes the reconstructive industry. 3D-printed implants and scaffolds are needed for the regeneration of defects within complex environments, such as the interface of hard and soft tissue. For optimal regeneration the 3D-printed scaffolds and implants must provide for properties that are currently not available by 3D-printable materials: nano-structures specific to cell environments, barrier prop-erties and the ability to release drugs specific to the therapeutic need. The 3D-printable nano-porose membrane of this project is comprised of three layers: the outer layers each provide an optimal environment for proliferation of fibroblasts and osteoblasts respectively. The middle layer offers barrier properties against the invasion of fast proliferating soft tissue fibroblasts. Without the barrier, fibroblasts overgrow osteoblasts that proliferate at a slower rate. This overgrowth prevents bone regeneration. Though the three layers of the 3D-printeable membrane are different in their nanostructures, the membrane is printed in one process. 3D structures are a result of crosslinking applying UV light. Differing nano-structures are created by combining a polymer pre-mix with different concentrations of cross-linkers during printing. Also, a hydroxyapatite nano-particle gradient is added to the membrane, enhancing proliferation and differentiation of osteoblasts. In summary, this project targets the development of the optimal patient-specific implant for accelerated wound care and bone regeneration.