Master student

Electrospinning of 3D structures based on sol-gel bioactive glasses


Supervisors: Dr. Liliana Liverani, Prof. Aldo R. Boccaccini

The successful treatment of chronic wounds or bone defects is a growing challenge for the healthcare systems worldwide. Electrospinning is a versatile technique for producing continuous fibers at the micro-and nanoscale [1]. The high porosity and large surface area of electrospun fibers provide numerous binding sites for protein adsorption and cell attachment by mimicking the morphology of the natural extracellular matrix (ECM). Sol-gel derived silica glasses have been exploited for several applications, in particular related to the release of therapeutic ions, i.e. wound healing applications [2]. The aim of this Master thesis is to explore the combination of sol-gel processing and electrospinning to produce a new generation of composite or hybrid fibres for wound healing applications. Several factors affecting the fibrous morphology including glass composition and the addition of polymeric agents will be investigated. The variation and optimization of the electrospinning parameters for each tested glass composition and the characterization of the obtained fibrous scaffolds will be performed.

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

[2]  K. Zheng, et al., Ag modified mesoporous bioactive glass nanoparticles for enhanced antibacterial activity in 3D infected skin model, Mater. Sci. Eng. C  103 (2019) 109764.

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