Substrate conductivity dependent modulation of cell proliferation and differentiation in vitro
In designing and developing various biomaterials, the influence of substrate properties, like surface topography, stiffness and wettability on the cell functionality has been investigated widely. However, such study to probe into the influence of the substrate conductivity on cell fate processes is rather limited. In order to address this issue, spark plasma sintered HA-CaTiO3 (Hydroxyapatite-Calcium titanate) has been used as a model material system to showcase the effect of varying conductivity on cell functionality. Being electroactive in nature, mouse myoblast cells (C2C12) were selected as a model cell line in this study. It was inferred that myoblast adhesion/growth systematically increases with substrate conductivity due to CaTiO3 addition to HA. Importantly, parallel arrangement of myoblast cells on higher CaTiO3 containing substrates indicate that self-adjustable cell patterning can be achieved on conductive biomaterials. Furthermore, enhanced myoblast assembly and myotube formation were recorded after 5 days of serum starvation. Overall, the present study conclusively establishes the positive impact of the substrate conductivity towards cell proliferation and differentiation as well as confirms the efficacy of HA-CaTiO3 biocomposites as conductive platforms to facilitate the growth, orientation and fusion of myoblasts, even when cultured in the absence of external electric field.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 34, Issue 29, September 2013, Pages 7073–7085