Surface Innovations

ISSN 2050-6252 | E-ISSN 2050-6260
Volume 8 Issue 1-2, February 2020, pp. 76-88
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There are growing advantages of using electrospun poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) mats for tissue engineering purposes. However, because of poor surface physicochemical properties, using PET as a biomaterial may have some serious problems, such as poor wettability, inappropriate surface roughness and consequently weak cell attachment. To avoid such complications, in the present study, a combination of nanosecond pulsed plasma surface modification and chitosan coating was used as a versatile solution for tackling the mentioned problems. The effects of plasma treatment and chitosan coating were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, goniometry, weight loss study and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The results showed that plasma modification resulted in the introduction of active polar oxygen (O)-containing functional groups onto the PET surface. The PET mat exhibited over 30 and 25% enhancement of hydroxyl and carboxyl groups after plasma treatment, respectively. Consequently, the oxygen/carbon (C) ratio increased from 0·36 to 0·73. These modifications led to improvement of physical properties, such as a significant increase in wettability and chitosan deposition. Chitosan coating introduced new nitrogen (N)-containing functional groups, which were absent in the uncoated PET. Plasma treatment increased the nitrogen/carbon ratio of chitosan-coated samples by a factor of 2. The obtained results suggest an enhancement in surface physicochemical properties with noteworthy potential applications in tissue engineering scaffolds.

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