Development of Salt Leached Silk Fibroin Scaffold using Direct Dissolution Techniques for Cartilage Tissue Engineering
Autologous transplantations, the gold standard, did not meet sufficient health tissue coverage area for cartilage damage treatments. The field of tissue engineering offers a promising alternative to fulfill this limitation by growing patient own cells on biomaterials through tissue culture, reconstructed into new cartilage tissue, and the implanted to the injury area. To support tissue regeneration, biocompatible, biodegradable, and high strength silk fibroin (SF) was proposed in this study as scaffold materials. In this research, direct dissolution in CaCl2/formic acid, a faster and simpler process than traditional dissolution techniques, combined with salt leaching technique. SF contents on the scaffold were varied from 2 w/v% to 12 w/v% and NaCl size as porogen was fixed in diameter of 250±58 µm. Evaluation of the SF scaffold’s morphology, hydrophilicity, biodegradability, and biocompatibility were conducted. The results showed porous silk fibroin scaffold had been successfully developed. The SF scaffolds have pore size 261-293 µm with highly interconnected pores. FTIR and XRD analysis of the scaffolds showed the characteristics of silk fibroin, which reveals the α-helix amorphous and β-sheet crystalline structure and comparable to the silk fibers. The scaffold showed good hydrophilicity and high water uptakes, which essential properties for cell survival. The scaffold degraded under Protease XIV, indicate biodegradable properties. Observation of cell attachment confirms the scaffold has good biocompatibility to adipose-derived stem cells and are suitable to be used in cartilage tissue engineering.
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