Recent studies have demonstrated the angiogenic potential of 45S5 Bioglass. However, it is not known whether the angiogenic properties of Bioglass remain when the bioactive glass particles are incorporated into polymer composites. The objectives of the current study were to investigate the angiogenic properties of 45S5 Bioglass particles incorporated into biodegradable polymer composites. In vitro studies demonstrated that fibroblasts cultured on discs consisting of specific quantities of Bioglass particles mixed into poly(D,L-lactide-co-glycolide) secreted significantly increased quantities of vascular endothelial growth factor. The optimal quantity of Bioglass particles determined from the in vitro experiments was incorporated into three-dimensional macroporous poly(D,L-lactide-co-glycolide) foam scaffolds. The foam scaffolds were fabricated using either compression molding or thermally induced phase separation processes. The foams were implanted subcutaneously into mice for periods of up to 6 weeks. Histological assessment was used to determine the area of granulation tissue around the foams, and the number of blood vessels within the granulation tissue was counted. The presence of Bioglass particles in the foams produced a sustained increase in the area of granulation tissue surrounding the foams. The number of blood vessels surrounding the neat foams was reduced after 2 weeks of implantation; however, compression-molded foams containing Bioglass after 4 and 6 weeks of implantation had significantly more blood vessels surrounding the foams compared with foams containing no Bioglass at the same time points. These results indicate that composite polymer foam scaffolds containing Bioglass particles retain granulation tissue and blood vessels surrounding the implanted foams. The use of this polymer composite for tissue engineering scaffolds might provide a novel approach for ensuring adequate vascular supply to the implanted device.
- Angiogenesis Inducing Agents
- Biocompatible Materials
- Lactic Acid
- Mice, Inbred C3H
- Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
- Neovascularization, Physiologic
- Polyglycolic Acid