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Porous chitosan scaffolds with surface micropatterning and inner porosity and their effects on Schwann cells

Li, Guicai, Zhao, Xueying, Zhao, Weixin, Zhang, Luzhong, Wang, Caiping, Jiang, Maorong, Gu, Xiaosong, Yang, Yumin
Biomaterials 2014 v.35 no.30 pp. 8503-8513
Schwann cells, cell growth, chitosan, freeze drying, nerve growth factor, nerve tissue, peripheral nervous system, porosity, secretion
Chitosan is found to promote the regeneration of peripheral nerve system in our previous studies, whereas the regeneration speed is not satisfied with clinical request. Micropatterning could promote cell orientation and growth, however, the effect of porous chitosan micropatterning on nerve regeneration is rarely reported. In this study, the porous chitosan micropatterning with surface ridge/groove and inner porosity structure was fabricated using a combination of micromodeling and lyophilization method. The morphology and stability of the prepared chitosan micropatterning were evaluated, the regulation of Schwann cells behavior by chitosan micropatterning was evaluated. The results showed that the chitosan micropatterning displayed stripe-like structure with a clear and complete edge. The micropatterning with 30/30 μm was more stable than 20/20 μm sample. Schwann cells on chitosan micropatterning showed orientation adhesion and began to grow along a certain direction after culture for 2 h, and displayed the minimal orientation angle and the largest length/width ratio on 30/30 μm micropatterning after further culture for 3 d and 5 d, indicating the most obvious cell orientation. Moreover, the secretion of nerve growth factor (NGF) demonstrated that the micropatterned chitosan had no negative influence on the physiological function of Schwann cells. Thus, the results indicate that the porous chitosan micropatterning can regulate Schwann cell growth well, which may have potential application in nerve regeneration. The study provides an important basis for constructing porous nerve conduit with micropatterning structure in the inner wall.