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Improving effects of chitosan nanofiber scaffolds on osteoblast proliferation and maturation

Authors Ho MH, Liao MH, Lin YL, Lai CH, Lin PI, Chen RM

Received 20 May 2014

Accepted for publication 12 June 2014

Published 9 September 2014 Volume 2014:9(1) Pages 4293—4304

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S68012

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Ming-Hua Ho,1,2 Mei-Hsiu Liao,3 Yi-Ling Lin,2 Chien-Hao Lai,3 Pei-I Lin,3 Ruei-Ming Chen2–4

1Department of Chemical Engineering, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei, Taiwan; 2Cell Physiology and Molecular Image Research Center and Department of Anesthesiology, Wan Fang Hospital, 3Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan; 4Anesthetics and Toxicology Research Center, Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

Abstract: Osteoblast maturation plays a key role in regulating osteogenesis. Electrospun nanofibrous products were reported to possess a high surface area and porosity. In this study, we developed chitosan nanofibers and examined the effects of nanofibrous scaffolds on osteoblast maturation and the possible mechanisms. Macro- and micro observations of the chitosan nanofibers revealed that these nanoproducts had a flat surface and well-distributed fibers with nanoscale diameters. Mouse osteoblasts were able to attach onto the chitosan nanofiber scaffolds, and the scaffolds degraded in a time-dependent manner. Analysis by scanning electron microscopy further showed mouse osteoblasts adhered onto the scaffolds along the nanofibers, and cell–cell communication was also detected. Mouse osteoblasts grew much better on chitosan nanofiber scaffolds than on chitosan films. In addition, human osteoblasts were able to adhere and grow on the chitosan nanofiber scaffolds. Interestingly, culturing human osteoblasts on chitosan nanofiber scaffolds time-dependently increased DNA replication and cell proliferation. In parallel, administration of human osteoblasts onto chitosan nanofibers significantly induced osteopontin, osteocalcin, and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) messenger (m)RNA expression. As to the mechanism, chitosan nanofibers triggered runt-related transcription factor 2 mRNA and protein syntheses. Consequently, results of ALP-, alizarin red-, and von Kossa-staining analyses showed that chitosan nanofibers improved osteoblast mineralization. Taken together, results of this study demonstrate that chitosan nanofibers can stimulate osteoblast proliferation and maturation via runt-related transcription factor 2-mediated regulation of osteoblast-associated osteopontin, osteocalcin, and ALP gene expression.

Keywords: chitosan nanofibers, osteoblast-associated gene expression, osteoblast maturation, Runx2

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