Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 6

Biocomposites Related Abstracts

6 Effects of Li2O Doping on Mechanical and Electrical Properties of Bovine Hydroxyapatite Composites (BHA)

Authors: Oguzhan Gunduz, Sibel Daglilar, Isil Kerti, Murat Karagoz, Fatih Dumludag, Faik Nuzhet Oktar


Hydroxyapatite (HA) materials have common use in bone repairing due to its ability to accelerate the bone growth around the implant. In spite of being a biocompatible and bioactive material, HA has a limited usage as an implant material because of its weak mechanical properties. HA based composites are required to improve the strength and toughness properties of the implant materials without compromising of biocompatibility. The excellent mechanical properties and higher biocompatibilities are expected from each of biomedical composites. In this study, HA composites were synthesized by using bovine bone reinforced doped with different amount of (wt.%) Li2O. The pressed pellets were sintered at various sintering temperatures between 1000ºC and 1300°C, and mechanical, electrical properties of the obtained products were characterized. In addition to that, in vitro stimulated body fluid (SBF) tests for these samples were conducted. The most suitable composite composition for biomedical applications was discussed among the composites studied.

Keywords: Biocomposites, Biocompatibility, Conductivity, electrical property, mechanical property, sintering temperature

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5 Assessment of the Change in Strength Properties of Biocomposites Based on PLA and PHA after 4 Years of Storage in a Highly Cooled Condition

Authors: Karolina Mazur, Stanislaw Kuciel


Polylactides (PLA) and polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are the two groups of biodegradable and biocompatible thermoplastic polymers most commonly utilised in medicine and rehabilitation. The aim of this work is to determine the changes in the strength properties and the microstructures taking place in biodegradable polymer composites during their long-term storage in a highly cooled environment (i.e. a freezer at -24ºC) and to initially assess the durability of such biocomposites when used as single-use elements of rehabilitation or medical equipment. It is difficult to find any information relating to the feasibility of long-term storage of technical products made of PLA or PHA, but nonetheless, when using these materials to make products such as casings of hair dryers, laptops or mobile phones, it is safe to assume that without storing in optimal conditions their degradation time might last even several years. SEM images and the assessment of the strength properties (tensile, bending and impact testing) were carried out and the density and water sorption of two polymers, PLA and PHA (NaturePlast PLE 001 and PHE 001), filled with cellulose fibres (corncob grain – Rehofix MK100, Rettenmaier&Sohne) up to 10 and 20% mass were determined. The biocomposites had been stored at a temperature of -24ºC for 4 years. In order to find out the changes in the strength properties and the microstructure taking place after such a long time of storage, the results of the assessment have been compared with the results of the same research carried out 4 years before. Results shows a significant change in the manner of fractures – from ductile with developed surface for the PHA composite with corncob grain when the tensile testing was performed directly after the injection into a more brittle state after 4 years of storage, which is confirmed by the strength tests, where a decrease of deformation is observed at point of fracture. The research showed that there is a way of storing medical devices made out of PLA or PHA for a reasonably long time, as long as the required temperature of storage is met. The decrease of mechanical properties found during tensile testing and bending for PLA was less than 10% of the tensile strength, while the modulus of elasticity and deformation at fracturing slightly rose, which may implicate the beginning of degradation processes. The strength properties of PHA are even higher after 4 years of storage, although in that case the decrease of deformation at fracturing is significant, reaching even 40%, which suggests its degradation rate is higher than that of PLA. The addition of natural particles in both cases only slightly increases the biodegradation.

Keywords: Biocomposites, Storage, PHA, PLA

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4 Nanocellulose Reinforced Biocomposites Based on Wheat Plasticized Starch for Food Packaging

Authors: Rebeca Bouza, Maite Rico, Belén Montero, Carmen Ramirez, Irene Derungs


Starch is a promising polymer for producing biocomposite materials because it is renewable, completely biodegradable and easily available at a low cost. Thermoplastic starches (TPS) can be obtained after the disruption and plasticization of native starch with a plasticizer. In this work, the solvent casting method was used to obtain TPS films from wheat starch plasticized with glycerol and reinforced with nanocellulose (CNC). X-ray diffraction analysis was used to follow the evolution of the crystallinity. The native wheat starch granules have shown a profile corresponding to A-type crystal structures typical for cereal starches. When TPS films are analyzed a high amorphous halo centered on 19º is obtained, indicating the plasticization process is completed. SEM imaging was made in order to analyse the morphology. The image from the raw wheat starch granules shows a bimodal granule size distribution with some granules in large round disk-shape forms (A-type) and the others as smaller spherical particles (B-type). The image from the neat TPS surface shows a continuous surface. No starch aggregates or swollen granules can be seen so, the plasticization process is complete. In the surfaces of reinforced TPS films aggregates are seen as the CNC concentration in the matrix increases. The CNC influence on the mechanical properties of TPS films has been studied by dynamic mechanical analysis. A direct relation exists between the storage modulus values, E’, and the CNC content in reinforced TPS films: higher is the content of nanocellulose in the composite, higher is the value of E’. This reinforcement effect can be explained by the appearance of a strong and crystalline nanoparticle-TPS interphase. Thermal stability of films was analysed by TGA. It has not observed any influence on the behaviour related to the thermal degradation of films with the incorporation of the CNC. Finally, the resistance to the water absorption films was analysed following the standard UNE-EN ISO 1998:483. The percentage of water absorbed by the samples at each time was calculated. The addition of 5 wt % of CNC to the TPS matrix leads to a significant improvement in the moisture resistance of the starch based material decreasing their diffusivity. It has been associated to the formation of a nanocrystal network that prevents swelling of the starch and therefore water absorption and to the high crystallinity of cellulose compared to starch. As a conclusion, the wheat film reinforced with 5 wt % of cellulose nanocrystals seems to be a good alternative for short-life applications into the packaging industry, because of its greatest rigidity, thermal stability and moisture sorption resistance.

Keywords: Biocomposites, Wheat, Starch, Nanocellulose

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3 Determining the Electrospinning Parameters of Poly(ε-Caprolactone)

Authors: Oguzhan Gunduz, Sibel Daglilar, M. Kagan Keler, Isil Kerti


Electrospinning is a versatile way to occur fibers at nano-scale and polycaprolactone is a biomedical material which has a wide usage in cartilage defects and tissue regeneration. PCL is biocompatible and durable material which can be used in bio-implants. Therefore, electrospinning process was chosen as a fabrication method to get PCL fibers in an effective way because of its significant adjustments. In this research study, electrospinning parameters was evaluated during the producing of polymer tissue scaffolds. Polycaprolactone’s molecular weight was 80.000 Da and was employed as a tissue material in the electrospinning process. PCL was decomposed in dimethylformamid(DMF) and chloroform(CF) with the weight ratio of 1:1. Different compositions (1%, 3%, 5%, 10% and 20 %) of PCL was prepared in the laboratory conditions. All solvents with different percentages of PCL have been taken into the syringe and loaded into the electrospinning system. In electrospinning dozens of trial were applied to get homogeneously uniform scaffold samples. Taylor cone which is crucial point for electrospinning characteristic was occurred and changed in different voltages up to the material compositions’ conductivity. While the PCL percentages were increasing in the electrospinning, structure started to arise with droplets, which was an expressive problem for tissue scaffold. The vertical and horizontal layouts were applied to produce non-woven structures at all.

Keywords: Biocomposites, Tissue Engineering, Electrospinning, artificial scaffold

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2 Biodegradability Evaluation of Polylactic Acid Composite with Natural Fiber (Sisal)

Authors: A. Bárbara Cattozatto Fortunato, D. de Lucca Soave, E. Pinheiro de Mello, M. Piasentini Oliva, V. Tavares de Moraes, G. Wolf Lebrão, D. Fernandes Parra, S. Marraccini Giampietri Lebrão


Due to increasing environmental pressure for biodegradable products, especially in polymeric materials, in order to meet the demands of the biological cycles of the circular economy, new materials have been developed as a sustainability strategy. This study proposes a composite material developed from the biodegradable polymer PLA Ecovio® (polylactic acid - PLA) with natural sisal fibers, where the soybean ester was used as a plasticizer, which can aid in adhesion between the materials and fibers, making the most attractive final composite from an environmental point of view. The composites were obtained by extrusion. The materials tests were produced and submitted to biodegradation tests. Through the biodegradation tests, it can be seen that the biodegradable polymer composition with 5% sisal fiber presented about 12.4% more biodegradability compared to the polymer without fiber addition. It has also been found that the plasticizer was not a compatible with fibers and the polymer. Finally, fibers help to anticipate the decomposition process of the material when subjected to conditions of a landfill. Therefore, its intrinsic properties are not affected during its use, only the biodegradation process begins after its exposure to landfill conditions.

Keywords: Biocomposites, sisal, polilactic acid, Polylactic Acid (PLA)

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1 Crosslinked Porous 3-Dimensional Cellulose Nanofibers/Gelatin Based Biocomposite Aerogels for Tissue Engineering Application

Authors: Ali Mirtaghavi, Andy Baldwin, Rajendarn Muthuraj, Jack Luo


Recent advances in biomaterials have led to utilizing biopolymers to develop 3D scaffolds in tissue regeneration. One of the major challenges of designing biomaterials for 3D scaffolds is to mimic the building blocks similar to the extracellular matrix (ECM) of the native tissues. Biopolymer based aerogels obtained by freeze-drying have shown to provide structural similarities to the ECM owing to their 3D format and a highly porous structure with interconnected pores, similar to the ECM. Gelatin (GEL) is known to be a promising biomaterial with inherent regenerative characteristics owing to its chemical similarities to the ECM in native tissue, biocompatibility abundance, cost-effectiveness and accessible functional groups, which makes it facile for chemical modifications with other biomaterials to form biocomposites. Despite such advantages, gelatin offers poor mechanical properties, sensitive enzymatic degradation and high viscosity at room temperature which limits its application and encourages its use to develop biocomposites. Hydrophilic biomass-based cellulose nanofibrous (CNF) has been explored to use as suspension for biocomposite aerogels for the development of 3D porous structures with excellent mechanical properties, biocompatibility and slow enzymatic degradation. In this work, CNF biocomposite aerogels with various ratios of CNF:GEL) (90:10, 70:30 and 50:50) were prepared by freeze-drying technique, and their properties were investigated in terms of physicochemical, mechanical and biological characteristics. Epichlorohydrin (EPH) was used to investigate the effect of chemical crosslinking on the molecular interaction of CNF: GEL, and its effects on physicochemical, mechanical and biological properties of the biocomposite aerogels. Ultimately, chemical crosslinking helped to improve the mechanical resilience of the resulting aerogels. Amongst all the CNF-GEL composites, the crosslinked CNF: GEL (70:30) biocomposite was found to be favourable for cell attachment and viability. It possessed highly porous structure (porosity of ~93%) with pore sizes ranging from 16-110 µm, adequate mechanical properties (compression modulus of ~47 kPa) and optimal biocompatibility both in-vitro and in-vivo, as well as controlled enzymatic biodegradation, high water penetration, which could be considered a suitable option for wound healing application. In-vivo experiments showed improvement on inflammation and foreign giant body cell reaction for the crosslinked CNF: GEL (70:30) compared to the other samples. This could be due to the superior interaction of CNF with gelatin through chemical crosslinking, resulting in more optimal in-vivo improvement. In-vitro cell culture investigation on human dermal fibroblasts showed satisfactory 3D cell attachment over time. Overall, it has been observed that the developed CNF: GEL aerogel can be considered as a potential scaffold for soft tissue regeneration application.

Keywords: Biocomposites, Tissue Engineering, Aerogels

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