The relative chemical stability of two commercially available polyurethanes-Pellethane, currently used in biomedical devices, and Corethane, considered as a potential biomaterial-was investigated following aging protocols in hydrolytic and oxidative conditions (HOC, water, hydrogen peroxide, and nitric acid) and in physiological media (PHM, phosphate buffer, lipid dispersion, and bile from human donors). The chemical modifications induced on these polymers were characterized using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), gel permeation chromatography (GPC), and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). With the exception of nitric acid, all of the aging media promoted a mild hydrolytic reaction leading to a slight molecular weight loss in both polymers. When aged in water and hydrogen peroxide, Pellethane experienced structural modifications through microdomain phase separation along with an increase of the order within the soft-hard segment domains. The incubation of Pellethane in nitric acid also resulted in an important decrease of the melting temperature of its hard segments with chain scission mechanisms. Moreover, incubation in PHM led to an increase of the order within shorter hard-segment domains. FTIR data revealed the presence of aliphatic amide molecules used as additives on the Pellethane's surface. The incubation of Corethane under the same conditions promoted an almost uniform molecular reorganization through a phase separation between the hard and soft segments as well as an increase of the short-range order within the hard-segment domains. Incubation of this polymer in nitric acid also resulted in a chain scission process that was less pronounced than that measured for the Pellethane samples. Finally, lipid adsorption occurred on the Corethane sample incubated in bile for 120 days. Overall data indicate that polycarbonate urethane presents a greater chemical stability than does polyetherurethane.
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"In general, stability tests can be conducted from substantially different viewpoints (i.e., under different conditions, such as temperature, and exposure to different chemical and physical stimuli), with the aim of investigating different properties (e.g., thermal, oxidative, chemical, irradiation, flame, and hydrolysis) and on very different time scales. The conditions for the practical hydrolytic degradation/stability tests of various polymeric and composite materials are chosen individually according to the intended use, and they substantially differ in the temperature, time and environment of their sample exposures[5,8,14,15,26272829303132333435363738. Longterm experiments under physiologically simulated conditions are essential for the assessment of the hydrolytic stability of new biomaterials to be used in medical applications[26,28,29,31,36,37,39]. "
"Importantly though, PU has been shown to degrade in vivo due to the presence of ether linkages in PU soft segments susceptible to chemical degradation. Ether and ester bond breakage allows both PU and PLGA, respectively, to be easily chemically and structurally modified to improve cellular responses.3–5 "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although showing much promise for numerous tissue engineering applications, polyurethane and poly-lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) have suffered from a lack of cytocompatibility, sometimes leading to poor tissue integration. Nanotechnology (or the use of materials with surface features or constituent dimensions less than 100 nm in at least one direction) has started to transform currently implanted materials (such as polyurethane and PLGA) to promote tissue regeneration. This is because nanostructured surface features can be used to change medical device surface energy to alter initial protein adsorption events important for promoting tissue-forming cell functions. Thus, due to their altered surface energetics, the objective of the present in vivo study was to create nanoscale surface features on a new polyurethane and PLGA composite scaffold (by soaking the polyurethane side and PLGA side in HNO3 and NaOH, respectively) and determine bladder tissue regeneration using a minipig model. The novel nanostructured scaffolds were further functionalized with IKVAV and YIGSR peptides to improve cellular responses. Results provided the first evidence of increased in vivo bladder tissue regeneration when using a composite of nanostructured polyurethane and PLGA compared with control ileal segments. Due to additional surgery, extended potentially problematic healing times, metabolic complications, donor site morbidity, and sometimes limited availability, ileal segment repair of a bladder defect is not optimal and, thus, a synthetic analog is highly desirable. In summary, this study indicates significant promise for the use of nanostructured polyurethane and PLGA composites to increase bladder tissue repair for a wide range of regenerative medicine applications, such as regenerating bladder tissue after removal of cancerous tissue, disease, or other trauma.
Preview · Article · Aug 2013 · International Journal of Nanomedicine
"Over the years there have been several attempts to replace the oxidatively susceptible polyether moiety with more oxidatively stable chemistries, creating low durometer biostable materials. For example, soft polycarbonate urethanes showed improved oxidative stability when the carbonate chemistry replaced the ether chemistry . However, the carbonate moiety proved to be hydrolytically unstable . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Segmented polyurethane multiblock polymers containing polydimethylsiloxane and polyether soft segments form tough and easily processed thermoplastic elastomers (PDMS-urethanes). Two commercially available examples, PurSil 35 (denoted as P35) and Elast-Eon E2A (denoted as E2A), were evaluated for abrasion and fatigue resistance after immersion in 85 °C buffered water for up to 80 weeks. We previously reported that water exposure in these experiments resulted in a molar mass reduction, where the kinetics of the hydrolysis reaction is supported by a straight forward Arrhenius analysis over a range of accelerated temperatures (37-85 °C). We also showed that the ultimate tensile properties of P35 and E2A were significantly compromised when the molar mass was reduced. Here, we show that the reduction in molar mass also correlated with a reduction in both the abrasion and fatigue resistance. The instantaneous wear rate of both P35 and E2A, when exposed to the reciprocating motion of an ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) jacketed cable, increased with the inverse of the number averaged molar mass (1/Mn). Both materials showed a change in the wear surface when the number-averaged molar mass was reduced to ≈16 kg/mole, where a smooth wear surface transitioned to a 'spalling-like' pattern, leaving the wear surface with ≈0.3 mm cracks that propagated beyond the contact surface. The fatigue crack growth rate for P35 and E2A also increased in proportion to 1/Mn, after the molar mass was reduced below a critical value of ≈30 kg/mole. Interestingly, this critical molar mass coincided with that at which the single cycle stress-strain response changed from strain hardening to strain softening. The changes in both abrasion and fatigue resistance, key predictors for long term reliability of cardiac leads, after exposure of this class of PDMS-urethanes to water suggests that these materials are susceptible to mechanical compromise in vivo.