Enhanced osteogenic activity of a poly(butylene succinate)/calcium phosphate composite by simple alkaline hydrolysis
Bone engineering offers the prospect of alternative therapies for clinically relevant skeletal defects. Poly(butylene succinate) (PBSu) is a biodegradable and biocompatible polyester which may possess some limitations in clinical use due to its hydrophobicity. In order to overcome these limitations and increase the bioactivity, a simple and convenient surface hydrolysis of PBSu, PBSu/hydroxyapatite and PBSu/β-tricalcium phosphate (TCP) films was performed. The resulting surfaces (i.e., HPBSu, HPBSu/HA and HPBSu/TCP) were tested for their physicochemical property, biocompatibility and osteogenic potency. The results showed that surface hydrolysis significantly increased surface roughness and hydrophilicity of the composites, with the HPBSu/TCP possessing the most pronounced results. All the materials appeared to be biocompatible and supported in vitro growth and osteoblast differentiation of hMSCs, and the alkaline hydrolysis significantly enhanced the hMSC cell proliferation and the osteogenic potency of PBSu/TCP compared with the non-hydrolyzed sample. In conclusion, the HPBSu/TCP possessed better hydrophilicity, biocompatibility and osteogenic potency in vitro, suggesting that this simple and convenient alkaline hydrolysis could be used to augment the biological property of PBSu-based composites for bone engineering in vivo.