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Fabrication, characterization, and biocompatibility assessment of a novel elastomeric nanofibrous scaffold: A potential scaffold for soft tissue engineering

Elham Shamirzaei Jeshvaghani, Laleh Ghasemi‐Mobarakeh, Reza Mansurnezhad, Fatemeh Ajalloueian, Mahshid Kharaziha, Mohammad Dinari, Maryam Sami Jokandan, Ioannis S Chronakis

With regard to flexibility and strength properties requirements of soft biological tissue, elastomeric materials could be more beneficial in soft tissue engineering applications. The present work investigates the use of an elastic polymer, (polycaprolactone fumarate [PCLF]), for fabricating an electrospun scaffold. PCLF with number‐average molecular weight of 13,284 g/mol was synthetized, electrospun PCLF:polycaprolactone (PCL) (70:30) nanofibrous scaffolds were fabricated and a novel strategy (in situ photo‐crosslinking along with wet electrospinning) was applied for crosslinking of PCLF in the structure of PCLF:PCL nanofibers was presented. Sol fraction results, Fourier‐transform infrared spectroscopy, and mechanical tests confirmed occurrence of crosslinking reaction. Strain at break and Young's modulus of crosslinked PCLF:PCL nanofibers fabricated was found to be 114.5 ± 3.9% and 0.6 ± 0.1 MPa, respectively, and dynamic mechanical analysis results revealed elasticity of nanofibers. MTS assay showed biocompatibility of PCLF:PCL (70:30) nanofibrous scaffolds. Our overall results showed that electrospun PCLF:PCL nanofibrous scaffold could be considered as a candidate for further in vitro and in vivo experiments and its application for engineering of soft tissues subjected to in vivo cyclic mechanical stresses.

Journal Papers

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