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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 379294, 8 pages
Research Article

Hydroxyapatite Whisker Reinforced 63s Glass Scaffolds for Bone Tissue Engineering

1State Key Laboratory of High Performance Complex Manufacturing, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China
2Orthopedic Biomedical Materials Institute, Central South University, Changsha 410001, China
3Department of Orthopedics, The Second Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha 410001, China
4Hunan Provincial Tumor Hospital and the Affiliated Tumor Hospital of Xiangya School of Medicine, Central South University, Changsha 410006, China
5School of Basic Medical Science, Central South University, Changsha 410078, China

Received 29 September 2014; Revised 4 January 2015; Accepted 19 January 2015

Academic Editor: Kibret Mequanint

Copyright © 2015 Cijun Shuai 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.


Bioactive glass (BG) is widely used for bone tissue engineering. However, poor mechanical properties are the major shortcomings. In the study, hydroxyapatite nanowhisker (HANw) was used as a reinforcement to improve the mechanical properties. 63s glass/HANw scaffolds were successfully fabricated by selective laser sintering (SLS). It was found that the optimal compressive strength and fracture toughness were achieved when 10 wt.% HANw was added. This led to 36% increase in compressive strength and 83% increase in fracture toughness, respectively, compared with pure 63s glass scaffolds. Different reinforcement mechanisms were analyzed based on the microstructure investigation. Whisker bridging and whisker pulling-out were efficient in absorbing crack propagating energy, resulting in the improvement of the mechanical properties. Moreover, bioactivity and biocompatibility of the scaffolds were evaluated in vitro. The results showed that composite scaffolds with 10 wt.% HANw exhibited good apatite-forming ability and cellular affinity.