Both physical and chemical crosslinking methods have been shown to be effective in improving the biological stability and mechanical properties of porous collagen scaffolds. However, the wetting of the collagen fibril surface by a culture medium is reduced and it is difficult for the medium to diffuse into the 3D structure of a porous collagen scaffold. This article reports a strategy for the surface processing of crosslinked collagen scaffolds by an integrated ultraviolet/ozone perfuse processing technique. Ultraviolet/ozone perfuse processing improved surface wettability for both the exterior and interior surfaces of the porous 3D collagen scaffold. This leads to a significant improvement in the scaffolds ability to take up water without compromising the bulk biological stability and mechanical properties. In vitro evaluation using mesenchymal stem cell demonstrated that surface processing enhanced cell colonization of the scaffolds, cells could migrate deep into the structure of the scaffolds, and significantly higher levels of cell proliferation were achieved. In contrast, the cells were unable to migrate deep into the scaffolds, and most of the cells that survived were observed only in the top seeding layer resulting in a low level of cell activity in the unprocessed scaffolds.
- POLY(D,L-LACTIC ACID)