Raman and infrared study of electrospun PLLA/PCL nanofiber blends for use in tissue engineering
Recently, the biomedical engineering field has developed at a very fast pace as improved techniques and materials become available to promote its growth. Consequently, the research in polymeric biomaterials has been highly stimulated by this trend. The goal of the current research is to demonstrate the usefulness of the Raman scattering, Raman mapping, and infrared absorption spectroscopies to tissue engineering, by spectroscopically characterizing blends of PLLA and PCL polymers, which were prepared by electrospinning with and without cell addition. The proposed use of these blends is as primary biomaterials in biodegradable scaffolds used in tissue engineering. Both Raman and infrared absorption spectra showed a direct relation between the relative intensities of the characteristic molecular vibrations of the individual polymers with their concentrations in each blend. The confocal Raman mapping of the samples that were prepared by co-electrospinning allowed direct visualization of different polymeric fibers. These images not only reveal the microstructural characteristics of each polymer, but they are also in good agreement with the Raman scattering results. Furthermore, by performing Raman mapping inside a single fiber, the homogeneity of the polymeric mixture can be visualized. These results demonstrate the existence of sub-domains of non-interacting polymers. The broadening of the cell characteristic peak at 1661 cm -1 observed in the Raman spectra of the blends seeded with C2C12 myoblasts, could be an indication of cell attachment onto the scaffolds.
0541: Biomedical engineering
0794: Materials science