PCL-PGLA composite tubular scaffold preparation and biocompatibility investigation

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The objective of this paper was to fabricate a biodegradable tubular scaffold for small diameter (d < 6 mm) blood vessel tissue engineering. The tube scaffold needed a porous wall for cell attachment, proliferation and tissue regeneration with its degradation. A novel method given in this paper was to coat a porous layer of poly (ε-caprolactone) (PCL) on the outside of a poly (glycolic-co-lactic acid) (PGLA with GA: LA = 90:10) fiber braided tube to give a PCL-PGLA composite. The PGLA tube was fabricated using a braiding machine by inserting a Teflon tube with the desired diameter in center of the 20 spindles, which are the carriers of PGLA fibers. Changing the diameter of the Teflon tube can vary the inner diameter of a braided PGLA tube. Thermally induced phase separation method was used for PCL solution coating on the surface of the PGLA braided tube. Controlling the polymer concentration, non-solvent addition and quenching temperature generated the pore structures, with pore sizes ranging from 10–30 μm. The fibroblast cells were seeded on the tubular scaffold and cultured in vitro for the biocompatibility investigation. Histology results showed that the fibroblast cells proliferated on the interconnected pore of the PCL porous layer in 1 week. (Int J Artif Organs 2006; 29: 790–9)

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