Direct three-dimensional printing of polymeric scaffolds with nanofibrous topography

Yang, Jing, Shakesheff, Kevin M. and Prasopthum, Aruna (2018) Direct three-dimensional printing of polymeric scaffolds with nanofibrous topography. Biofabrication, 10 (2). 025002/1-025002/13. ISSN 1758-5090

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Three-dimensional (3D) printing is a powerful manufacturing tool for making 3D structures with well-defined architectures for a wide range of applications. The field of tissue engineering has also adopted this technology to fabricate scaffolds for tissue regeneration. The ability to control architecture of scaffolds, e.g. matching anatomical shapes and having defined pore size, has since been improved significantly. However, the material surface of these scaffolds is smooth and does not resemble that found in natural extracellular matrix (ECM), in particular, the nanofibrous morphology of collagen. This natural nanoscale morphology plays a critical role in cell behaviour. Here, we have developed a new approach to directly fabricate polymeric scaffolds with an ECM-like nanofibrous topography and defined architectures using extrusion-based 3D printing. 3D printed tall scaffolds with interconnected pores were created with disparate features spanning from nanometres to centimetres. Our approach removes the need for a sacrificial mould and subsequent mould removal compared to previous methods. Moreover, the nanofibrous topography of the 3D printed scaffolds significantly enhanced protein absorption, cell adhesion and differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) when compared to those with smooth material surfaces. These 3D printed scaffolds with both defined architectures and nanoscale ECM-mimicking morphologies have potential applications in cartilage and bone regeneration.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an author-created, un-copyedited version of an article published in Biofabrication. IOP Publishing Ltd is not responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it. The Version of Record is vailable online at
Keywords: 3D printing, tissue engineering, poly(L-lactide), nanofibrous scaffolds, mesenchymal stem cells, differentiation
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Pharmacy
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Yang, Jing
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2018 15:28
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 19:26

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