Nb–C Nanocomposite Films with Enhanced Biocompatibility and Mechanical Properties for Hard-Tissue Implant Applications

Rok publikacji: 2015
Wydawca:  ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 2015, 7 (11), 6351–6358
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L. Yate, L. E. Coy, D. Gregurec, W. Aperador, S. E. Moya, G. Wang
One of the key challenges in engineering of orthopedic implants is to “bioactivate” their surface by using different surface techniques and materials. Carbon, especially amorphous (a-C) and diamond-like carbon down (DLC) films have attracted much attention in biomedical fields due to their biocompatibility and low coefficient of friction. However, they are unsuitable for uses as a “bioactivity enhancer” of orthopedic implants due to their bioinertness. In this work, we use the nonreactive magnetron sputtering technique to produce a-C films including the biocompatible niobium (Nb) element to alter the surface chemistry and nanotopography of the a-C films with the purpose of bioactivating the a-C film coated implants. Results show that the nanocomposite films (Nb–C) formed by the addition of Nb into the a-C films not only have improved corrosion resistance, but also possess enhanced mechanical properties (nanohardness, Young’s modulus and superelastic recovery). Preosteoblasts (MC3T3-E1) cultured on the Nb–C films have enhanced adhesion and upregulated alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, compared to those cultured on the a-C film and TiO2 films used as a control, which are thought to be ascribed to the combined effects of the changes in surface chemistry and the refinement of the nanotopography caused by the addition of Nb.

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