In vitro evaluation of three-dimensional single-walled carbon nanotube composites for bone tissue engineering

Ashim Gupta, Benjamin J. Main, Brittany L. Taylor, Manu Gupta, Craig A. Whitworth, Craig Cady, Joseph W. Freeman, Saadiq F. El-Amin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to develop threedimensional single-walled carbon nanotube composites (SWCNT/PLAGA) using 10-mg single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) for bone regeneration and to determine the mechanical strength of the composites, and to evaluate the interaction of MC3T3-E1 cells via cell adhesion, growth, survival, proliferation, and gene expression. PLAGA (polylacticco- glycolic acid) and SWCNT/PLAGA microspheres and composites were fabricated, characterized, and mechanical testing was performed. MC3T3-E1 cells were seeded and cell adhesion/morphology, growth/survival, proliferation, and gene expression analysis were performed to evaluate biocompatibility. Imaging studies demonstrated microspheres with uniform shape and smooth surfaces, and uniform incorporation of SWCNT into PLAGA matrix. The microspheres bonded in a random packing manner while maintaining spacing, thus resembling trabeculae of cancellous bone. Addition of SWCNT led to greater compressive modulus and ultimate compressive strength. Imaging studies revealed that MC3T3- E1 cells adhered, grew/survived, and exhibited normal, nonstressed morphology on the composites. SWCNT/PLAGA composites exhibited higher cell proliferation rate and gene expression compared with PLAGA. These results demonstrate the potential of SWCNT/PLAGA composites for musculoskeletal regeneration, for bone tissue engineering, and are promising for orthopedic applications as they possess the combined effect of increased mechanical strength, cell proliferation, and gene expression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4118-4126
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part A
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 01-11-2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys


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