ABSTRACT: In this study we coated a new biocompatible, nanostructured titanium alloy, Ti13Nb13Zr, with a thin layer of hydroxyapatite nanocrystals and we investigated the response of human bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal cells. The coating was realized using a slightly supersaturated CaP solution, which provokes a fast deposition of nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite. A thin layer of deposition is appreciable on the etched Ti13Nb13Zr substrates after just 1.5 h soaking in the CaP solution, and it reaches a thickness of 1-2 mum after 3 h soaking. The coating seems thinner than that deposited on Ti6Al4V, which was examined for comparison, likely because of the different roughness profiles of the two etched alloys, and it is constituted of elongated HA nanocrystals, with a mean length of about 100 nm. Mesenchymal stem cells were seeded onto coated and uncoated Ti alloys and cultured for up to 35 days. Cell morphology, proliferation and differentiation were evaluated. The cells display good adhesion and proliferation on the uncoated substrates, whereas the presence of hydroxyapatite coating slightly reduces cell proliferation and induces differentiation of MSCs towards a phenotypic osteoblastic lineage, in agreement with the increase of the expression of osteopontin, osteonectin and collagen type I, evaluated by means of rt-PCR. Type I collagen expression is higher in Ti13Nb13Zr MSC culture compared to Ti6Al4V, standing for a more efficient extracellular matrix deposition.
Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A 08/2007; 82(1):213-21. · 2.63 Impact Factor