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Title

Ice as a Green-Structure-Directing Agent in the Synthesis of Macroporous MWCNTs and Chondroitin Sulphate Composites

AuthorsNardecchia, Stefania ; Serrano, María C. ; García-Argüelles, Sara; Maia Da Costa, Marcelo E. H.; Ferrer, M. Luisa ; Gutiérrez, María C.
Issue Date28-Mar-2017
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
CitationMaterials 10 (4): 355 (2017)
AbstractThe incorporation of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) into chondroitin sulphate-based scaffolds and the effect on the structural, mechanical, conductive, and thermal properties of the resulting scaffolds is investigated. Three-dimensional hierarchical materials are prepared upon the application of the ice segregation-induced self-assembly (ISISA) process. The use of ice as structure-directing agents avoids chemicals typically used for this purpose (e.g., surfactants, block copolymers, etc.), hence, emphasising the green features of this soft-templating approach. We determine the critical parameters that control the morphology of the scaffolds formed upon ice-templating (i.e., MWCNTs type, freezing conditions, polymer and MWCNT concentration). MWCNTs are surface functionalized by acidic treatment. MWCNT functionalization is characterized by Raman, Fourier transfer infrared (FTIR) and X-ray Photoelectron (XPS) spectroscopies. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis and porosity studies reveal that MWCNT content modifies the morphology of the macroporous structure, which decreases by increasing MWCNT concentration. Differences in scaffold morphology should be translated into their conductivity and mechanical properties. As a general trend, the Young’s modulus and the electrical conductivity of the scaffolds increase with the MWCNT content. Preliminary biocompatibility tests with human osteoblast-like cells also reveal the capability of these structures to support cell growth.
Publisher version (URL)http://doi.org/10.3390/ma10040355
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/149380
DOI10.3390/ma10040355
Identifiersdoi: 10.3390/ma10040355
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