Functionalisation of PLLA with polymer brushes to trigger the assembly of fibronectin into nanonetworks

Sprott, M. R. , Gallego-Ferrer, G., Dalby, M. J. , Salmeron-Sanchez, M. and Cantini, M. (2019) Functionalisation of PLLA with polymer brushes to trigger the assembly of fibronectin into nanonetworks. Advanced Healthcare Materials, 8(3), 1801469. (doi: 10.1002/adhm.201801469) (PMID:30609243)

176060.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.



Poly‐l‐lactic acid (PLLA) has been used as a biodegradable polymer for many years; the key characteristics of this polymer make it a versatile and useful resource for regenerative medicine. However, it is not inherently bioactive. Thus, here, a novel process is presented to functionalize PLLA surfaces with poly(ethyl acrylate) (PEA) brushes to provide biological functionality through PEA's ability to induce spontaneous organization of the extracellular matrix component fibronectin (FN) into physiological‐like nanofibrils. This process allows control of surface biofunctionality while maintaining PLLA bulk properties (i.e., degradation profile, mechanical strength). The new approach is based on surface‐initiated atomic transfer radical polymerization, which achieves a molecularly thin coating of PEA on top of the underlying PLLA. Beside surface characterization via atomic force microscopy, X‐ray photoelectron spectroscopy and water contact angle to measure PEA grafting, the biological activity of this surface modification is investigated. PEA brushes trigger FN organization into nanofibrils, which retain their ability to enhance adhesion and differentiation of C2C12 cells. The results demonstrate the potential of this technology to engineer controlled microenvironments to tune cell fate via biologically active surface modification of an otherwise bioinert biodegradable polymer, gaining wide use in tissue engineering applications.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Salmeron-Sanchez, Professor Manuel and Dalby, Professor Matthew and Sprott, Dr Mark and Cantini, Dr Marco
Authors: Sprott, M. R., Gallego-Ferrer, G., Dalby, M. J., Salmeron-Sanchez, M., and Cantini, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Molecular Biosciences
College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Biomedical Engineering
Journal Name:Advanced Healthcare Materials
ISSN (Online):2192-2659
Published Online:04 January 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 The Authors
First Published:First published in Advanced Healthcare Materials 8(3):1801469
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
Data DOI:10.5525/gla.researchdata.715

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record

Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
722061Engineering growth factor microenvironments- a new therapeutic paradigm for regenerative medicineManuel Salmeron-SanchezEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/P001114/1ENG - BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING
3036130Engineered microenvironments to harvest stem cell response to viscosity for cartilage repairMarco CantiniMedical Research Council (MRC)MR/S005412/1ENG - Biomedical Engineering
470563DTC in cell and proteomic technologies (continuation)Jonathan CooperEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/F500424/1ENG - BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING