Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Search results for: Yuncang Li

3 Biodegradable Magnesium Alloys with Addition of Rare Earth Elements for Biomedical Applications

Authors: Yuncang Li, Cuie Wen


Biodegradable metallic materials such as magnesium (Mg)-based alloys have attracted extensive interest for use as bone implant materials. However, the high biodegradation rate of existing Mg alloys in the physiological environment of human body leads to losing mechanical integrity before adequate bone healing and producing a large volume of hydrogen gas. Therefore, slowing down the biodegradation rate of Mg alloys is a critical task in developing new biodegradable Mg alloy implant materials. One of the most effective approaches to achieve this is to strategically design new Mg alloys with low biodegradation rate, excellent biocompatibility, and enhanced mechanical properties. Our research selected biocompatible and biofunctional alloying elements such as zirconium (Zr), strontium (Sr), and rare earth elements (REEs) to alloy Mg and has developed a new series of Mg-Zr-Sr-REEs alloys for biodegradable implant applications. Research results indicated that Sr and Zr additions could refine the grain size, decrease the biodegradation rate, and enhance the biological behaviors of the Mg alloys. The REE addition, such as holmium (Ho) and dysprosium (Dy) to Mg-Zr-Sr alloys resulted in enhanced mechanical strength and decreased biodegradation rate. In addition, Ho and Dy additions (≤ 5 wt.%) to Mg-Zr-Sr alloys led to enhancement of cell adhesion and proliferation of osteoblast cells on the Mg-Zr-Sr-Ho/Dy alloys.

Keywords: biocompatibility, magnesium, mechanical and biodegrade properties, rare earth elements

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2 Graphene Reinforced Magnesium Metal Matrix Composites for Biomedical Applications

Authors: Khurram Munir, Cuie Wen, Yuncang Li


Magnesium (Mg) metal matrix composites (MMCs) reinforced with graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) have been developed by powder metallurgy (PM). In this study, GNPs with different concentrations (0.1-0.3 wt.%) were dispersed into Mg powders by high-energy ball-milling processes. The microstructure and resultant mechanical properties of the fabricated nanocomposites were characterized using transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Raman spectroscopy (RS), compression and nano-wear tests. The corrosion resistance of the fabricated composites was evaluated by electrochemical tests and hydrogen evolution measurements. Finally, the biological response of Mg-GNPs composites was assessed using osteoblast-like SaOS2 cells. The results indicate that GNPs are excellent candidates as reinforcements in Mg matrices for the manufacture of biodegradable Mg-based composite implants. GNP addition improved the mechanical properties of Mg via synergetic strengthening modes. Moreover, retaining the structural integrity of GNPs during PM processing improved the ductility, compressive strength, and corrosion resistance of the Mg-GNP composites as compared to monolithic Mg. Cytotoxicity assessments did not reveal any significant toxicity with the addition of GNPs to Mg matrices. This study demonstrates that Mg-xGNPs with x < 0.3 wt.%, may constitute novel biodegradable implant materials for load-bearing applications.

Keywords: magnesium-graphene composites, strengthening mechanisms, In vitro cytotoxicity, biocorrosion

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1 Self-Organized TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂ Nanotubes on β-Ti Alloy by Anodization

Authors: Muhammad Qadir, Yuncang Li, Cuie Wen


Surface properties such as topography and physicochemistry of metallic implants determine the cell behavior. The surface of titanium (Ti)-based implant can be modified to enhance the bioactivity and biocompatibility. In this study, a self-organized titania–niobium pentoxide–zirconia (TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂) nanotubular layer on β phase Ti35Zr28Nb alloy was fabricated via electrochemical anodization. Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and water contact angle measurement techniques were used to investigate the nanotubes dimensions (i.e., the inner and outer diameters, and wall thicknesses), microstructural features and evolution of the hydrophilic properties. The in vitro biocompatibility of the TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂ nanotubes (NTs) was assessed by using osteoblast cells (SaOS2). Influence of anodization parameters on the morphology of TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂ NTs has been studied. The results indicated that the average inner diameter, outer diameter and the wall thickness of the TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂ NTs were ranged from 25–70 nm, 45–90 nm and 5–13 nm, respectively, and were directly influenced by the applied voltage during anodization. The average inner and outer diameters of NTs increased with increasing applied voltage, and the length of NTs increased with increasing anodization time and water content of the electrolyte. In addition, the size distribution of the NTs noticeably affected the hydrophilic properties and enhanced the biocompatibility as compared with the uncoated substrate. The results of this study could be considered for developing nano-scale coatings for a wide range of biomedical applications.

Keywords: Titanium alloy, TiO₂–Nb₂O₅–ZrO₂ nanotubes, anodization, surface wettability, biocompatibility

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