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Magnetic/fluorescent (magnetofluorescent) materials have become one of the most important tools in the imaging modality in vivo using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and fluorescence imaging. We succeeded in fabricating magnetofluorescent nanoparticles (MFNPs) consisting of silicon/magnetite composite nanoparticles. Our unique synthetic approach can control simultaneously the magnetic and fluorescence behaviors by varying the particle size, demonstrating the superparamagnetic behavior and green fluorescence for the MFNPs having mean diameter of 3.0 nm, and the ferromagnetic behavior without fluorescence for the MFNPs having mean diameter more than 5.0 nm. More intriguingly, the MFNPs with superparamagnetism can detect green fluorescence even after the magnetic guidance of MFNPs by the commercial neodymium magnet. Additionally, the MFNPs having two magnetic behaviors also possess good biocompatibility.
In this study, in order to investigate biocompatibility of nitrogen-doped hydrogenated amorphous carbon (a-C:H:N) film coating segmented polyurethane (SPU) scaffold fiber sheet (a-C:H:N-Scaffold) in in-vitro test, mouse fibroblasts (NIH 3T3) cells were grown on the a-C:H:N-Scaffold. The cell behavior was monitored by time-lapse imaging system. Additionally, the a-C:H:N-Scaffold was implanted at partial aorta descendens of a goat for 35 days. The surface morphology, composition, and wettability of the a-C:H:N-scaffold was estimated by Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectrometer (XPS), and contact angle measurement. In in-vitro test, it was observed that a-C:H:N film coating had a facilitatory effect on cell motility and cell growth. In in-vivo test, it was observed that the a-C:H:N-Scaffold surface was uniformly covered by neointima. The a-C:H:N-Scaffold surface had no thrombus formation as an inflammatory reaction and it was shown that the a-C:H:N film coating had a good blood compatibility. These results suggest that a-C:H:N film coating has good cytocompatibility and blood compatibility and it is a promising approach for improvement of biocompatibility of biomaterial surfaces.
In this study, we focus on effect of diamond-like carbon (DLC) coating on scaffold for tissue engineering. DLC film was deposited on segmented polyurethane (SPU) scaffold sheet which consists of micro SUP fibers. Structural and compositional effects of the DLC film coating were investigated on cell growth as an investigation of biological response. The surface composition, morphology, structures, and wettability of the DLC film coating was estimated by using X-ray photoelectron spectrometer (XPS), Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), Ar-laser Raman spectrophotometer (Raman), and contact angle measurement. And then, human umbilical vein endothelial (HUV-EC-C) cells were grown on the DLC coated scaffold sheet. The results presented here suggest that DLC film coating is promising approach to improve biological for tissue engineering.
Cytotoxicity of human cervical carcinoma cell line (HeLa cells) labeled with the nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si) particles before and after ultraviolet (UV) light exposure has studied on the viability and cellular membrane damages. The viability and cellular membrane damages of HeLa cells changed at high particle concentration of 1.12 mg/ml. The viability of HeLa cells labeled with the UV-exposed nc-Si particles was higher than that of unexposed nc-Si particles. However, the variation of cellular membrane damages was almost same for the nc-Si particles before and after UV exposure. These results substantiated the low toxicity of nc-Si particles. Moreover, the HeLa cells labeled with the nc-Si particles exhibited green fluorescence. On the other hand, in vivo test of nc-Si particles estimated by the visualization observation of the circulation from the lymphatic vessel to the lymph node of a mouse. The transfer pathway of nc-Si particles could be clearly monitored by the strong emission of red light.
We have investigated the stability of luminescence in pure water from a nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si) particles passivated with various chemical elements such as a hydrogen, carbon and oxygen atoms. Each sample emitted red light with a peak wavelength in a range from 690 to 800 nm. When the hydrogen- and/or carbon-passivated samples were immersed in pure water, the intensity of red luminescence was decreased by aging after a short period of time. At the same time, the peak wavelength was also shifted toward shorter wavelength. These were caused by the generation of defects (Pb-centers) and the reduction of particle size due to the desorption of hydrogen and/or carbon atoms and the replacement from the Si-H and/or Si-C bonds to the Si-O bond, respectively, at the surface of nc-Si particles. On the other hand, the oxygen-passivated sample showed stable luminescence in addition to the slight blue-shift of peak wavelength under the immersion in pure water for 400 hours. The good stability was attributed to the formation of stable surface condition. These results are a strong indication that the stability of the luminescence in pure water can be remarkably improved by the oxygen-passivation to the surface of nc-Si particles.
Diamond-like carbon (DLC) film was deposited uniformly on an irregular structure such as a polyurethane artificial heart blood pump using a special 3-dimensional type electrode. Process of applying the DLC film coating is accomplished by inserting a large number of small metallic balls (φ0.8 mm chromium balls). It is then possible to adjust the shape of the electrode in such a way that the DLC film coating can be applied to the irregular surface of the artificial heart. In investigating the availability of the electrode, under helium (He) plasma, the plasma states were measured using double probe analysis. Lateral profiles of the electron temperature were higher in the centre and decreased towards the edges of the electrode. On the other hand, the plasma density profiles were lower in the centre part than at the edges. The electrode kept ion sheath on the artificial heart blood pump's surface at self-bias voltage uniformly. The results were that the DLC film was deposited completely on the artificial heart blood pump at the film thickness of approximately 350 - 380 nm. Additionally the film structure was uniform.
We have studied the biological properties of nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si) particles after injection at various places in a mouse. The nc-Si particles with a size of 2.5 nm and a concentration of 1.3 mg/ml were dispersed in a normal saline solution (NSS). The NSS dispersible nc-Si particles were safely injected into the mouse. When the nc-Si particles in the NSS were directly injected into the subcutaneous vein and the coronary artery of the heart by syringe, the condition of bloodstream at each place was confirmed by the red luminescence (peak wavelength at 720 nm) from the nc-Si particles under the ultraviolet (UV) light-irradiation. Moreover, the nc-Si particles in the NSS, which were injected into the vein in the sole, smoothly flowed to the small intestine, and the smooth fluidity of nc-Si particles was also observed for the condition of the peristalsis of the small intestine. The nc-Si particles in the small intestine emitted red light during peristalsis under the UV light-irradiation. The red luminescence at each place was very bright and could be clearly seen with the naked eye. These phenomenons were achieved by the utilization of the harmless material, the formation of nc-Si particles with the single-order-size and the realization of the stable surface modification to the nc-Si particles.
We have investigated correlation between luminescence property and particle size of nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si) fabricated by controlling Si concentration in an amorphous SiOx (a-SiOx) films. The Si concentration in the a-SiOx film was increased with increasing a RF power and lowering a gas pressure. The increase of Si concentration led to expansion of the particle size of nc-Si. The particle size of nc-Si was varied from 1.8 nm up to 3.5 nm for the sample introduced the Si concentration from 0.7 % up to 9 %. The luminescent color from nc-Si grains, which differs in size, showed a red/green/blue lights.
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