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International Journal of Biomaterials
Volume 2009, Article ID 239643, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2009/239643
Research Article

Polycaprolactone Scaffolds Fabricated via Bioextrusion for Tissue Engineering Applications

1Department of Chemistry & Industrial Chemistry, University of Pisa, 56126 Pisa, Italy
2Center for Rapid and Sustainable Product Development, Polytechnic Institute of Leiria (IPL), 2414-016 Leiria, Portugal

Received 15 May 2009; Revised 22 June 2009; Accepted 23 June 2009

Academic Editor: Claudio Migliaresi

Copyright © 2009 Marco Domingos 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.

Abstract

The most promising approach in Tissue Engineering involves the seeding of porous, biocompatible/biodegradable scaffolds, with donor cells to promote tissue regeneration. Additive biomanufacturing processes are increasingly recognized as ideal techniques to produce 3D structures with optimal pore size and spatial distribution, providing an adequate mechanical support for tissue regeneration while shaping in-growing tissues. This paper presents a novel extrusion-based system to produce 3D scaffolds with controlled internal/external geometry for TE applications.The BioExtruder is a low-cost system that uses a proper fabrication code based on the ISO programming language enabling the fabrication of multimaterial scaffolds. Poly(-caprolactone) was the material chosen to produce porous scaffolds, made by layers of directionally aligned microfilaments. Chemical, morphological, and in vitro biological evaluation performed on the polymeric constructs revealed a high potential of the BioExtruder to produce 3D scaffolds with regular and reproducible macropore architecture, without inducing relevant chemical and biocompatibility alterations of the material.