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Issue 16, 2015
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Sub-nanoscale free volume and local elastic modulus of chitosan–carbon nanotube biomimetic nanocomposite scaffold-materials

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Abstract

Future progress in materials for tissue engineering and 3D cell cultures applications requires control of two key physical properties: nanoscale mechanical properties and mass transport. These requirements remain uncontrolled partly due to a lack of physical parameters and quantitative measurements. Using chitosan scaffolds as a model system in close-to-physiological conditions and a combination of experimental techniques and theory, we link structure with local nanomechanical properties. Additionally we introduce a parameter, the free volume, to predict variations in transport properties. By fabricating nanocomposites with single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) we are able to test our approach: incorporation of acid-treated, soluble, ∼80 nm SWNTs in a chitosan matrix leads to a 2 fold increase in mean local elastic modulus and a decrease of 3% of the free volume available for oxygen diffusion. Inclusion of hydrophobic, ∼800 nm SWNTs leads to a 100 fold increase of elastic modulus and doubles the voids percentage available for the transport of glucose.

Graphical abstract: Sub-nanoscale free volume and local elastic modulus of chitosan–carbon nanotube biomimetic nanocomposite scaffold-materials

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Publication details

The article was received on 21 Jan 2015, accepted on 05 Mar 2015 and first published on 05 Mar 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5TB00154D
Author version available: Download Author version (PDF)
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. B, 2015,3, 3169-3176
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    Sub-nanoscale free volume and local elastic modulus of chitosan–carbon nanotube biomimetic nanocomposite scaffold-materials

    E. Axpe, L. Bugnicourt, D. Merida, M. Goiriena-Goikoetxea, I. Unzueta, R. Sanchez-Eugenia, J. A. Garcia, F. Plazaola and S. Contera, J. Mater. Chem. B, 2015, 3, 3169
    DOI: 10.1039/C5TB00154D

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