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Comparative in vitro study of calcium phosphate ceramics for their potency as scaffolds for tissue engineering


BACKGROUND: Calcium phosphate ceramics have been widely considered as scaffolds for bone tissue engineering. Selection of the best support for cultured cells, crucial for tissue engineered systems, is still required.

OBJECTIVE: We examined three types of calcium phosphate compounds: α-tricalcium phosphate – the most soluble one, carbonate hydroxyapatite – chemically the most similar to the bone mineral and biphasic calcium phosphate – with the best in vivo biocompatibility in order to select the best support for osteoblastic cells for tissue engineered systems.

METHODS: Human osteoblasts were tested in direct contact with both dense samples and 3D scaffolds in either static or dynamic culture. Cell viability, cell spreading, osteogenic cell capacity, and extracellular matrix production were examined.

RESULTS: The obtained data indicate that biphasic calcium phosphate is the optimal cell-supporting material. In addition, dynamic culture improved cell distribution in the scaffolds, enhanced production of the extracellular matrix and promoted cells osteogenic capacity.

CONCLUSIONS: Biphasic calcium phosphate should be recommended as the most suitable matrix for osteogenic cells expansion and differentiation in tissue engineered systems.