Process study, development and degradation behavior of different size scale electrospun poly(caprolactone) and poly(lactic acid) fibers
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This study describes the preparation of electrospun poly(caprolactone) (PCL) and poly(lactic acid) (PLA) fibrous scaffolds with and without nano-hydroxyapatite (nHAp) having nanoscale, microscale and combined micro/nano (multiscale) architecture. Processing parameters such as polymer concentration, voltage, flow rate and solvent compositions were varied in wide range to display the effect of each one in determining the diameter and morphology of fibers. The effect of each regulating parameter on fiber morphology and diameter was evaluated and characterized using scanning electron microscope (SEM). Degradability of the selected fibrous scaffolds was verified by phosphate buffered saline immersion and its morphology was analyzed through SEM, after 5 and 12 months. Quantitative measurement in degradation was further evaluated through pH analysis of the medium. Both studies revealed that PLA had faster degradation compared to PCL irrespective of the size scale nature of fibers. Structural stability evaluation of the degraded fibers in comparison with pristine fibers by thermogravimetric analysis further confirmed faster degradability of PLA compared to PCL fibers. The results indicate that PLA showed faster degradation than PCL irrespective of the size-scale nature of fibrous scaffolds, and therefore, could be applied in a variety of biomedical applications including tissue engineering.
KeywordsElectrospinning Degradation Nanofibers Microfibers Multiscale fibers Poly(lactic acid) Poly(caprolactone)
The authors are thankful to the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India and Global Innovation & Technology Alliance (GITA), India for supporting this project under India Taiwan Programme in Science and Technology (Ref. No. GITA/DST/TWN/P-71/2015), the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan, ROC (MOST-104-2923-E-182-001-MY3) and Chang Gung Memorial Hospital (BMRP 249, CRRPD2G0141).
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