Development of composite tissue scaffolds containing naturally sourced mircoporous hydroxyapatite

F. Kusmanto, Gavin Walker, Quan Gan, Pamela Walsh, Fraser Buchanan, Glenn Dickson, Mervyn McCaigue, Christine Maggs, Matthew Dring

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


The aims of this work were to investigate the conversion of a marine alga into hydroxyapatite (HA), and furthermore to design a composite bone tissue engineering scaffold comprising the synthesised HA within a porous bioresorbable polymer. The marine alga Phymatolithon calcareum, which exhibits a calcium carbonate honeycomb structure, with a natural architecture of interconnecting permeable pores (microporosity 4-11 mu m), provided the initial raw material for this study. The objective was to convert the alga into hydroxyapatite while maintaining its porous morphology using a sequential pyrolysis and chemical synthesis processes. Semi-quantitative XRD analysis of the post-hydrothermal material (pyrolised at 700-750 degrees C), indicated that the calcium phosphate (CaP) ceramic most likely consisted of a calcium carbonate macroporous lattice, with hydroxyapatite crystals on the surface of the macropores. Cell visibility (cytotoxicity) investigations of osteogenic cells were conducted on the CaP ceramic (i.e., the material post-hydrothermal analysis) which was found to be non-cytotoxic and displayed good biocompatibility when seeded with MG63 cells. Furthermore, a hot press scaffold fabrication technique was developed to produce a composite scaffold of CaP (derived from the marine alga) in a polycaprolactone (PCL) matrix. A salt leaching technique was further explored to introduce macroporosity to the structure (50-200 mu m). Analysis indicated that the scaffold contained both micro/macroporosity and mechanical strength, considered necessary for bone tissue engineering applications. (C) 2008 Published by Elsevier B.V.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-407
Number of pages10
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Environmental Engineering


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