Author(s): Zhu A, Zhao F, Ma T
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Abstract Vascular graft surface properties significantly affect adhesion, growth and function of endothelial cells (ECs). The bulk degradation property of poly(lactic acid) (PLA) makes it possible for it to be replaced by cellular materials and PLA is desirable as a scaffold material for vascular grafts. However, PLA has an unfavorable surface property for EC adhesion and proliferation due to the lack of a selective cell adhesion motif. Photo-initiated surface-grafting polymerization is a promising method for immobilizing certain biomacromolecules on material surfaces without compromising bulk properties. N-Maleic acyl-chitosan (NMCS) is a novel biocompatible amphiphilic derivative of chitosan with double bonds and can be initiated by ultraviolet light. In this study, gelatin was complexed with NMCS via hydrophobic interaction, and gel/NMCS complex thus formed was then grafted on the PLA surface to improve EC biocompatibility. X-ray photoelectron and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and water contact angle measurement confirmed immobilization of the gel/NMCS complex on PLA surface. Moreover, the gel/NMCS modified PLA enhanced human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) spreading and flattening, and promoted the expression of more structured CD31 and vWF compared to unmodified PLA film. Compared to the unmodified PLA surface, the HUVECs on the modified PLA surface had elevated uptake of acetylated low-density lipoprotein, and maintained the ability to modulate metabolic activity upon exposure to shear stress at 5dyncm(-2) by up-regulating nitric oxide and prostacyclin production. Cell retention was 1.6 times higher on the gel/NMCS-PLA surface, demonstrating its improved potential for hemocompatibility. These results indicate that photo-initiated surface-grafting of the biomimetic gel/NMCS complex is an effective method to modify material surfaces as vascular grafts.
This article was published in Acta Biomater
and referenced in Journal of Bioequivalence & Bioavailability