Polymeric scaffolds made of PCL/PLCL (ratio 1:3, respectively) blends have been developed by using the Thermally Induced Phase Separation (TIPS) process. A new additional technique has been introduced in this study by applying pre-heat treatment to the blend solution before the TIPS process. The main objective of this study is to evaluate the influence of the pre-heat treatment on mechanical properties. The mechanical evaluation showed that the mechanical strength of the scaffolds (including tensile strength, elastic modulus, and strain) improved as the temperature of the polymer blend solution increased. The effects on the microstructure features were also observed, such as increasing strut size and differences in phase separation morphology. Those microstructure changes due to temperature control contributed to the increasing of mechanical strength. The in vitro cell study showed that the PCL/PLCL blend scaffold exhibited better cytocompatibility than the neat PCL scaffold, indicated by a higher proliferation at 4 and 7 days in culture. This study high-lighted that the improvement of the mechanical strength of polymer blends scaffolds can be achieved using a very versatile way by controlling the temperature of the polymer blend solution before the TIPS process.
|Journal||Journal of Functional Biomaterials|
|Publication status||Published - Aug 2021|
- Mechanical properties
- PCL/PLCL blend
- Polymer blend
- Porous scaffold
- Pre-heat treatment