Graphene nanoplatelets-sericin surface-modified Gum alloy for improved biological response†
In this study a “Gum Metal” titanium-based alloy, Ti-31.7Nb-6.21Zr-1.4Fe-0.16O, was synthesized by melting and characterized in order to evaluate its potential for biomedical applications. The results showed that the newly developed alloy presents a very high strength, high plasticity and a low Young's modulus relative to titanium alloys currently used in medicine. For further bone implant applications, the newly synthesized alloy was surface modified with graphene nanoplatelets (GNP), sericin (SS) and graphene nanoplatelets/sericine (GNP–SS) composite films via Matrix Assisted Pulsed Laser Evaporation (MAPLE) technique. The characterization of each specimen was monitored by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), contact angle (CA) measurements, and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). The materials' surface analyses suggested the successful coating of GNP, SS and GNP–SS onto the alloy surface. Additionally, the activities of pre-osteoblasts such as cell adhesion, cytoskeleton organization, cell proliferation and differentiation potentials exhibited on these substrates were investigated. Results showed that the GNP–SS-coated substrate significantly enhanced the growth and osteogenic differentiation of MC3T3-E1 cells when compared to bare and GNP-coated alloy. Collectively, the results show that GNP–SS surface-modified Gum alloy can modulate the bioactivity of the pre-osteoblasts holding promise for improved biological response in vivo.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Editors’ collection: Graphene