The Mineralization of Various 3D-Printed PCL Composites

Journal of Functional Biomaterials 2022 Volume 13, Issue 4, Article 238

In this project, different calcification methods for collagen and collagen coatings were compared in terms of their applicability for 3D printing and production of collagen-coated scaffolds. For this purpose, scaffolds were printed from polycaprolactone PCL using the EnvisionTec 3D Bioplotter and then coated with collagen. Four different coating methods were then applied: hydroxyapatite (HA) powder directly in the collagen coating, incubation in 10× SBF, coating with alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and coating with poly-L-aspartic acid. The results were compared by ESEM, µCT, TEM, and EDX. HA directly in the collagen solution resulted in a pH change and thus an increase in viscosity, leading to clumping on the scaffolds. As a function of incubation time in 10× SBF as well as in ALP, HA layer thickness increased, while no coating on the collagen layer was apparently observed with poly-L-aspartic acid. Only ultrathin sections and TEM with SuperEDX detected nano crystalline HA in the collagen layer. Exclusively the incubation in poly-L-aspartic acid led to HA crystals within the collagen coating compared to all other methods where the HA layers formed in different forms only at the collagen layer.