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Enhanced osteoblast adhesion on nanostructured selenium compacts for anti-cancer orthopedic applications

Authors Tran P, Webster TJ

Published 12 September 2008 Volume 2008:3(3) Pages 391—396


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 5

Phong Tran1, Thomas J Webster2

1Physics Department; 2Division of Engineering and Department of Orthopedics, Brown University, Providence, USA

Abstract: Metallic bone implants possess numerous problems limiting their long-term efficacy, such as poor prolonged osseointegration, stress shielding, and corrosion under in vivo environments. Such problems are compounded for bone cancer patients since numerous patients receive orthopedic implants after cancerous bone resection. Unfortunately, current orthopedic materials were not originally developed to simultaneously increase healthy bone growth (as in traditional orthopedic implant applications) while inhibiting cancerous bone growth. The long-term objective of the present research is to investigate the use of nano-rough selenium to prevent bone cancer from re-occurring while promoting healthy bone growth for this select group of cancer patients. Selenium is a well known anti-cancer chemical. However, what is not known is how healthy bone cells interact with selenium. To determine this, selenium, spherical or semispherical shots, were pressed into cylindrical compacts and these compacts were then etched using 1N NaOH to obtain various surface structures ranging from the micron, submicron to nano scales. Changes in surface chemistry were also analyzed. Through these etching techniques, results of this study showed that biologically inspired surface roughness values were created on selenium compacts to match that of natural bone roughness. Moreover, results showed that healthy bone cell adhesion increased with greater nanometer selenium roughness (more closely matching that of titanium). In this manner, this study suggests that nano-rough selenium should be further tested for orthopedic applications involving bone cancer treatment.

Keywords: selenium, nano-rough, osteoblast, cancer, chemopreventive

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