Fibre laser treatment of Beta TNZT titanium alloys for load-bearing implant applications: effects of surface features on mesenchymal stem cell response and bacterial attachment

  • Clare Donaghy

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


A mismatch of hip implant and bone elastic modulus can lead to aseptic loosening and ultimately implant failure. The National Joint Registry have noted that the other leading causes of implant revision surgeries are infection and adverse tissue reaction to particulate debris. A combined solution is to use a beta titanium alloy with low elastic modulus in unison with fibre laser treatment (very fast, non-contact and clean)to enhance the surface properties (namely, roughness, topography, chemistry and wettability). Laser surface treatment is a process involving complex laser-plasma- material interactions and has shown to improve biological response. Multipotent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and Staphylococcus aureus bacteria were used to assess material-biological interactions. The aim is to improve in vivo performance by enhancing initial cell adhesion and encouraging faster bone formation while reducing the likelihood of bacterial infection. There is a potential to improve the performance of load-bearing implants to have a longer life span than conventional materials and implementation of laser surface treatment techniques can improve implant longevity and thus reducing the number of revision surgeries required over a patient’s life
Date of AwardDec 2019
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Queen's University Belfast
SupervisorChi Wai Chan (Supervisor), Andriana Margariti (Supervisor) & Savko Malinov (Supervisor)

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