, Volume 21, Issue 4, pp 1363-1369
Date: 27 Nov 2009

RGD-functionalisation of PLLA nanofibers by surface coupling using plasma treatment: influence on stem cell differentiation

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The aim of this study was to functionalize the surface of synthetic poly-(l-lactic) (PLLA) nanofibers with RGD peptide, in order to promote growth and osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) in vitro. The cRGD was coupled onto PLLA nanofibers using oxygen plasma combined with EDC/sulfo-NHS activation. Matrices were seeded with hMSC and cultivated over a period of 22 days under growth conditions and analyzed during the course of cultivation. The plasma activation of PLLA nanofibers resulted in a reduction of hydrophobicity as well as a formation of carboxyl groups on the surface of the fibers. Furthermore, maximum load, but not young’s modulus was influenced by the treatment with oxygen plasma. When hMSC were cultured onto the cRGD functionalized scaffolds, cells showed no increased proliferation or cell density but an induction of genes associated with the osteoblast lineage. In brief, this study indicates that functional peptides of the extracellular matrix can be coupled onto PLLA nanofibers using plasma treatment in combination with EDC/sulfo-NHS treatment. These groups are accessible for the growing cell and mediate probably some osteoinductive properties of collagen nanofibers.