ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0356.v1
Subject: Materials Science, Biomaterials Keywords: PEG; viability; osteoblasts; fibroblasts; pH; polyurethane; polyethylene glycol
Online: 23 September 2022 (03:52:52 CEST)
Grafting polyethylene glycol (PEG) on polymers surface is widely used to improve biocompatibility by reducing protein and cell adhesion. Although PEG is considered to be bioinert, its incorporation to biomaterials has shown to improve cell viability depending on the amount and molecular weight (MW) used. This phenomenon was studied here by grafting PEG of three MW onto polyurethane (PU) substrata at three molar concentrations to assess their effect on PU surface properties and on the viability of osteoblasts and fibroblasts. PEG formed a covering on the substrata which increased the hydrophilicity and surface energy of PUs. Among the results it was observed that osteoblast viability increased for all MW and grafting densities of PEG employed compared with unmodified PU. However, fibroblast viability only increased at certain combinations of MW and grafting densities of PEG, suggesting an optimal level of these parameters. PEG grafting also promoted a more spread cell morphology than that exhibited by unmodified PU; nevertheless, cells became apoptotic-like as PEG MW and grafting density were increased. These effects on cells could be due to PEG affecting culture medium pH, which became more alkaline at higher MW and concentrations of PEG. Results support the hypothesis that surface energy of PU substrates can be tuned by controlling the MW and grafting density of PEG, but these parameters should be optimized to promote cell viability without inducing apoptotic-like behavior.