Bacterial cellulose-based materials and medical devices: current state and perspectives.

University of Virginia School of Medicine, PO Box 800233, Charlottesville, VA 22908-0233, USA.
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology (Impact Factor: 3.81). 09/2011; 91(5):1277-86. DOI: 10.1007/s00253-011-3432-y
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Bacterial cellulose (BC) is a unique and promising material for use as implants and scaffolds in tissue engineering. It is composed of a pure cellulose nanofiber mesh spun by bacteria. It is remarkable for its strength and its ability to be engineered structurally and chemically at nano-, micro-, and macroscales. Its high water content and purity make the material biocompatible for multiple medical applications. Its biocompatibility, mechanical strength, chemical and morphologic controllability make it a natural choice for use in the body in biomedical devices with broader application than has yet been utilized. This paper reviews the current state of understanding of bacterial cellulose, known methods for controlling its physical and chemical structure (e.g., porosity, fiber alignment, etc.), biomedical applications for which it is currently being used, or investigated for use, challenges yet to be overcome, and future possibilities for BC.

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    ABSTRACT: Bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) has demonstrated a tempting prospect for applications in substitute of small blood vessels. However, present technology is inefficient in production and BNC tubes have a layered structure that may bring danger after implanting. Double oxygen-permeable silicone tubes in different diameters were therefore used as a tube-shape mold and also as oxygenated supports to construct a novel bioreactor for production of the tubular BNC materials. Double cannula technology was used to produce tubular BNC via cultivations with Acetobacter xylinum, and Kombucha, a symbiosis of acetic acid bacteria and yeasts. The results indicated that Kombucha gave higher yield and productivity of BNC than A. xylinum. Bacterial nanocellulose was simultaneously synthesized both on the inner surface of the outer silicone tube and on the outer surface of the inner silicone tube. Finally, the nano BNC fibrils from two directions formed a BNC tube with good structural integrity. Scanning electron microscopy inspection showed that the tubular BNC had a multilayer structure in the beginning but finally it disappeared and an intact BNC tube formed. The mechanical properties of BNC tubes were comparable with the reported value in literatures, demonstrating a great potential in vascular implants or in functional substitutes in biomedicine. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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    ABSTRACT: From the view of tissue engineering, the deficiency in porosity has impeded further application of bacterial cellulose (BC) as a super biomaterial. In this study, we used a combination method consisting of acetic acid treatment and freeze-drying operation to improve the porous profile of BC, as well as a simple and fast method to measure the thickness, density, and porosity of BC. Results have shown a significant improvement in the porosity of the inner structure of BC treated with acetic acid and freeze-drying. Microscopic observation by scanning electron microscopy exhibited explicit evidences that more orderly porous layer-by-layer structures and more pores were formed along the cross section of modified BC as compared with the control. The enhancement of mechanical properties and crystallinity of modified BC was also demonstrated due to the improvement of material porosity in the particular extent from 50.3 to 76.43%. Cell culture of human fibroblast cells exhibited good cell viability on modified BC, suggesting that a better porous profile of BC on the surface and cross section helps facilitate cells to attach, as well as potentially promotes cells to grow in. These significant results may open the possibility of producing BC nanomaterials for tissue engineering with desirable properties.
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