The relationship between cellular adhesion and surface roughness in polystyrene modified by microwave plasma radiation
Esmaeil Biazar1, Majid Heidari2, Azadeh Asefnezhad2, Naser Montazeri1
1Department of Chemistry, Islamic Azad University, Tonekabon Branch, Mazandaran; 2Department of Biomaterial Engineering, Faculty of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran
Background: Surface modification of medical polymers can improve biocompatibility. Pure polystyrene is hydrophobic and cannot provide a suitable environment for cell cultures. The conventional method for surface modification of polystyrene is treatment with plasma. In this study, conventional polystyrene was exposed to microwave plasma treatment with oxygen and argon gases for 30, 60, and 180 seconds.
Methods and results: Attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectra investigations of irradiated samples indicated clearly the presence of functional groups. Atomic force microscopic images of samples irradiated with inert and active gases indicated nanometric surface topography. Samples irradiated with oxygen plasma showed more roughness (31 nm) compared with those irradiated with inert plasma (16 nm) at 180 seconds. Surface roughness increased with increasing duration of exposure, which could be due to reduction of the contact angle of samples irradiated with oxygen plasma. Contact angle analysis showed reduction in samples irradiated with inert plasma. Samples irradiated with oxygen plasma showed a lower contact angle compared with those irradiated by argon plasma.
Conclusion: Cellular investigations with unrestricted somatic stem cells showed better adhesion, cell growth, and proliferation for samples radiated by oxygen plasma with increasing duration of exposure than those of normal samples.
Keywords: surface topography, polystyrene, plasma treatment, argon, oxygen
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