Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 43, Issue 13, pp 4433–4442 | Cite as

Polymer-bioceramic composites for tissue engineering scaffolds

  • Darmawati Mohamad Yunos
  • Oana Bretcanu
  • Aldo R. BoccacciniEmail author
Commonality of Phenomena in Composite Materials


Designing tissue engineering scaffolds with the required mechanical properties and favourable microstructure to promote cell attachment, growth and new tissue formation is one of the key challenges facing the tissue engineering field. An important class of scaffolds for bone tissue engineering is based on bioceramics and bioactive glasses, including: hydroxyapatite, bioactive glass (e.g. Bioglass®), alumina, TiO2 and calcium phosphates. The primary disadvantage of these materials is their low resistance to fracture under loads and their high brittleness. These drawbacks are exacerbated by the fact that optimal scaffolds must be highly porous (>90% porosity). Several approaches are being explored to enhance the structural integrity, fracture strength and toughness of bioceramic scaffolds. This paper reviews recent proposed approaches based on developing bioactive composites by introducing polymer coatings or by forming interpenetrating polymer-bioceramic microstructures which mimic the composite structure of bone. Several systems are analysed and scaffold fabrication processes, microstructure development and mechanical properties are discussed. The analysis of the literature suggests that the scaffolds reviewed here might represent the optimal solution and be the scaffolds of choice for bone regeneration strategies.


Foam Compressive Strength Simulated Body Fluid Bioactive Glass Bone Tissue Engineering 



OB acknowledges the European Commission for funding via a Marie Curie Fellowship. DMY acknowledges the financial support of the Malaysian Government for a PhD Studentship at Imperial College London, UK. We thank X. Miao (Queensland University of Technology, Australia) and J. Chevalier (INSA Lyon, France) for providing some of the micrographs presented in this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Darmawati Mohamad Yunos
    • 1
  • Oana Bretcanu
    • 1
  • Aldo R. Boccaccini
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of MaterialsImperial College LondonLondonUK

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