Mesenchymal stem cell responses to bone-mimetic electrospun matrices composed of polycaprolactone, collagen I and nanoparticulate hydroxyapatite

Academic Article


  • The performance of biomaterials designed for bone repair depends, in part, on the ability of the material to support the adhesion and survival of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). In this study, a nanofibrous bone-mimicking scaffold was electrospun from a mixture of polycaprolactone (PCL), collagen I, and hydroxyapatite (HA) nanoparticles with a dry weight ratio of 50/30/20 respectively (PCL/col/HA). The cytocompatibility of this tri-component scaffold was compared with three other scaffold formulations: 100% PCL (PCL), 100% collagen I (col), and a bi-component scaffold containing 80% PCL/20% HA (PCL/HA). Scanning electron microscopy, fluorescent live cell imaging, and MTS assays showed that MSCs adhered to the PCL, PCL/HA and PCL/col/HA scaffolds, however more rapid cell spreading and significantly greater cell proliferation was observed for MSCs on the tri-component bone-mimetic scaffolds. In contrast, the col scaffolds did not support cell spreading or survival, possibly due to the low tensile modulus of this material. PCL/col/HA scaffolds adsorbed a substantially greater quantity of the adhesive proteins, fibronectin and vitronectin, than PCL or PCL/HA following in vitro exposure to serum, or placement into rat tibiae, which may have contributed to the favorable cell responses to the tri-component substrates. In addition, cells seeded onto PCL/col/HA scaffolds showed markedly increased levels of phosphorylated FAK, a marker of integrin activation and a signaling molecule known to be important for directing cell survival and osteoblastic differentiation. Collectively these results suggest that electrospun bone-mimetic matrices serve as promising degradable substrates for bone regenerative applications. © 2011 Phipps et al.
  • Published In

  • PLoS One  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Phipps MC; Clem WC; Catledge SA; Xu Y; Hennessy KM; Thomas V; Jablonsky MJ; Chowdhury S; Stanishevsky AV; Vohra YK
  • Volume

  • 6
  • Issue

  • 2