Applied Surface Science ( IF 6.182 ) Pub Date : 2020-01-16 , DOI: 10.1016/j.apsusc.2020.145404 JuYeon Kim; WonJin Kim; GeunHyung Kim
A hierarchical micro/nanoscale scaffold fabricated using a combined method involving an electric-field (E-field)-assisted printing and plasma-treatment process was proposed for myoblast alignment and differentiation. By appropriately selecting various processing conditions, including the E-field strength and printing parameters, a uniaxially aligned bundle of polycaprolactone (PCL) consisting of microsized struts (diameter = 40–50 μm) was stably obtained. After the PCL struts were printed, oxygen-plasma treatment was applied, and eventually a chemically and physically modified nanoscale structure on their surfaces was achieved. To investigate the feasibility of the struts as a biomedical scaffold for muscle tissue regeneration, in vitro C2C12 myoblast activities, including the cell proliferation, cell alignment, and myotube formation, were evaluated. The unique fabricated structure exhibited significantly higher cellular activities, including myotube formation and myogenic gene expression, than non-hierarchical and flat surfaces.