One of the principal problems in the field of tissue engineering is to develop scaffolds that mimic the architecture of tissue at the nanoscale and have bioactivity properties.
The fibrous component of the extracellular matrix (ECM) in the tissue is made up of protein fibers such as collagens, elastin, keratin, laminins, fibronectin and vitronectin. The using of nanofibers consisted of a biodegradable polymers makes it possible to imitate the structure of the cellular matrix thereby creating comfortable conditions for cell adhesion and proliferation. We used polycaprolactone nanofibers because it has more suitable biodegradation time for biological application. However polycaprolactone is hydrophobic polymer and to improve biocompatibility of this material we covered nanofibers by COOH coating deposited by CO2/C2H4/Ar plasma polymerization.
Widely known that the in vivo bone bioactivity of a material can be predicted from the apatite formation on its surface in simulated body fluid (SBF). We investigated formation of Ca-containing layer on the surface of COOH modified PCL nanofibers and demonstrated high level biocompatibility and bioactivity by biological tests.
Fundamental processes behind plasma polymerization is studied through plasma diagnostics, as well as mass-spectroscopy and comprehensive surface analysis. The theoretical calculations are employed for better understanding of the surface reactions in the plasma polymer layers and for the characterization of the COOH grafting efficiency.