Electrospinning of shape memory polymer-bioactive glass composites for tissue engineering


Investigator: Paola Zezza (Visiting Master student, University of Bologna, Italy)

Paola Zezza


Supervisors (Bologna): Prof. Maria Letizia Focarete, Prof. Maurizio Toselli

Supervisors (Erlangen): Dr. Liliana Liverani, Prof. Aldo R. Boccaccini

Electrospinning is a promising processing method to manufacture 3D fibrous scaffolds for tissue engineering. Composite fibers incorporating bioactive glass (BG) particles in polymers have been developed using benign solvents in our Institute [1]. This study concerns the fabrication of electrospun composites fibers based on shape memory poly(epsilon-caprolactone) (PCL), synthesized at the University of Bologna, Italy, under the supervision of Prof. Focarete and Prof. Toselli [1] and BG particles. The obtained electrospun scaffolds will be characterized from the morphological, chemical and mechanical points of view at the Institute of Biomaterials in Erlangen, while the preservation of the shape memory properties will be assessed at the Chemistry Department "G. Ciamician" in Bologna. Moreover, acellular in vitro bioactivity tests will be performed to evaluate the bioactivity of the obtained composite fiber mats.

[1] Liverani, L., Boccaccini, A. R., Versatile production of poly(Epsilon-caprolactone) fibers by electrospinning using benign solvents, Nanomaterials 2016, 6(4), 75.

[2] Merlettini A. et al. Facile fabrication of shape memory poly (ε-caprolactone) non-woven mat by combining electrospinning and sol–gel reaction. RSC Advances, 2016, 6.50: 43964-43974.