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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 238762, 10 pages
Research Article

Chemical Synthesis, Characterisation, and Biocompatibility of Nanometre Scale Porous Anodic Aluminium Oxide Membranes for Use as a Cell Culture Substrate for the Vero Cell Line: A Preliminary Study

1Murdoch Applied Nanotechnology Research Group, Department of Physics, Energy Studies and Nanotechnology, School of Engineering and Energy, Murdoch University, Murdoch, WA 6150, Australia
2Animal Health Laboratories, Animal Virology, Department of Agriculture and Food, 3 Baron Hay Court, Kensington, WA 6150, Australia
3Department of Chemistry, Curtin University of Technology, Bentley, WA 6102, Australia

Received 23 April 2013; Accepted 11 November 2013; Published 21 January 2014

Academic Editor: Richard Tucker

Copyright © 2014 Gérrard Eddy Jai Poinern et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In this preliminary study we investigate for the first time the biomedical potential of using porous anodic aluminium oxide (AAO) membranes as a cell substrate for culturing the Cercopithecus aethiops (African green monkey) Kidney (Vero) epithelial cell line. One advantage of using the inorganic AAO membrane is the presence of nanometre scale pore channels that allow the exchange of molecules and nutrients across the membrane. The size of the pore channels can be preselected by adjusting the controlling parameters of a temperature controlled two-step anodization process. The cellular interaction and response of the Vero cell line with an in-house synthesised AAO membrane, a commercially available membrane, and a glass control were assessed by investigating cell adhesion, morphology, and proliferation over a 72 h period. The number of viable cells proliferating over the respective membrane surfaces revealed that the locally produced in-house AAO membrane had cells numbers similar to the glass control. The study revealed evidence of focal adhesion sites over the surface of the nanoporous membranes and the penetration of cellular extensions into the pore structure as well. The outcome of the study has revealed that nanometre scale porous AAO membranes have the potential to become practical cell culture scaffold substrates with the capability to enhance adhesion and proliferation of Vero cells.