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In this investigation, an electron beam melting-processed γ-TiAl alloy (Ti–48Al–2Cr–2Nb, at.%) was oxidized in air to improve its in vitro tribological, electrochemical, and biocompatibility properties. The γ-TiAl alloy samples were oxidized at 400, 600, and 800 °C for 1 and 4 h. The oxidized layer thickness, composition, and surface morphology found to change with oxidation temperature. The oxidation thickness varied between 1.29 ± 0.2 and 2.18 ± 0.2 μm. The primary oxides on the surface were Al2O3 and TiO2 with minor concentrations of Cr2O3, Nb2O5, and nitrides of Ti. The surface hardness of the alloy increased by 1.7-fold with increasing temperature from 400 to 800 °C with 1 h soaking, and at 4 h, the maximum hardness was 12.26 GPa. The high hardness of the oxidized γ-TiAl alloy resulted in two orders of magnitude lower wear rate than the bare γ-TiAl alloy. Oxidation at 800 °C for 4 h resulted in significant reduction in corrosion current and no passivity breakdown was observed. In vitro cell culture experiments, using mouse preosteoblast cells, revealed high cell density on the oxidized γ-TiAl alloy, suggesting its enhanced cell proliferation compared to the bare γ-TiAl alloy and CP-Ti.
In this work, morphology, viability, and metabolism of the amniotic mesenchymal stem cells conditioned with different citric acid (CA)/media ratios were investigated using rhodamine-phalloidin/4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole staining, live/dead assay, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL assay). The cells cultured in 25:75 CA/media displayed well spread actin filaments with a prominent nucleus and evidenced optimum viability. The gelation kinetics of chitosan solution in CA/media (25:75) was monitored via dynamic time sweep analysis on a rheometer. The chemical cross-linking of chitosan with CA was confirmed by nuclear magnetic resonance studies. Subsequently, chitosan solution was extruded in CA/media bath containing cells under benign conditions to form cell-laden fibers (living fibers). The prelabeled cells imaged immediately after fiber formation confirmed the attachment of the cells on the fibers. This approach has several advantages including instantaneous gelation, tunable mechanical properties, and adjustable biodegradability that can provide a platform technology for creating viable three dimensional (3D) building blocks for tissue engineering applications.
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