Bachelor student

Title: Investigation of modified BG-PLA composites for 3D FDM printing


Supervisor: Thomas Distler, Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Aldo Boccaccini

Bioactive glass (BG) scaffolds offer promising bioactivity as bone engineering platforms [1]. However, their relatively low mechanical strength and high brittleness limit the application of BG scaffolds in load bearing applicatons. To improve the mechanical properties, polymers/BG composites are being highly investigated [1]. One of the most utilized biodegradable synthetic polymers for 3D scaffolds in tissue engineering is poly(lactic acid) (PLA). The combination of PLA and BGs could lead to materials with optimized mechanical properties. The interface adhesion of the inorganic particles to the polymer matrix is of key importance for successful material reinforcement [2]. In this study, BG particles will be modified by different approaches to engineer the particle-polymer interface and to assess its influence on PLA-BG composites for 3D FDM printing. Composite filaments will be fabricated and 3D scaffolds will be printed via FDM. The mechanical properties will be assessed to determine the influence of the BG surface modification on fracture strength, strain fo failure and elastic behaviour of the composite scaffolds.

[1]  K. Rezwan, et al., Biodegradable and bioactive porous polymer/inorganic composite scaffolds for bone tissue engineering, Biomaterials 27 (2006), 3413-3431.

[2] L. Gritsch, et al., Polylactide-based materials science strategies to improve tissue-material interface without the use of growth factors or other biological molecules, Materials Science & Engineering C 94 (2019), 1083-1101.

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