Biomineralizaion of hydroxyapatite on polyethylene terephthalate artificial ligaments promotes graft-bone healing after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: An in vitro and in vivo study

Cai, J.; Ai, C.; Chen, J.; Chen, S.

Journal of Biomaterials Applications 35(2): 193-204


ISSN/ISBN: 1530-8022
PMID: 32338167
DOI: 10.1177/0885328220921530
Accession: 070061938

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The purpose of the present study is to modify the polyethylene terephthalate ligament with hydroxyapatite via biomineralization and to investigate its effect on graft-bone healing. After biomineralization of hydroxyapatite, the surface characterization of polyethylene terephthalate ligament was examined by scanning electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, and water contact angle measurements. The compatibility and osteoinduction, along with the underlying signaling pathway involved of hydroxyapatite-polyethylene terephthalate ligament, were evaluated in vitro. Moreover, a rabbit anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction model was established, and the polyethylene terephthalate or hydroxyapatite-polyethylene terephthalate artificial ligament was implanted into the knee. The micro-computed tomography analysis, histological, and immunohistochemical examination as well as biomechanical test were performed to investigate the effect of hydroxyapatite coating in vivo. The results of scanning electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction showed that the hydroxyapatite was successfully deposited on the polyethylene terephthalate ligament. Water contact angle of the hydroxyapatite-polyethylene terephthalate group was significantly smaller than that of the polyethylene terephthalate group. The in vitro study showed that hydroxyapatite coating significantly improved adhesion and proliferation of MC3T3-E1 cells. The osteogenic differentiation of cells was also enhanced through the activation of ERK1/2 pathway. The micro-computed tomography, histological, and immunohistochemical results showed that biomineralization of hydroxyapatite significantly promoted new bone and fibrocartilage tissue formation at 12 weeks postoperatively. Moreover, the failure load and stiffness in the hydroxyapatite-polyethylene terephthalate group were higher than that in the polyethylene terephthalate group. Therefore, biomineralizaion of hydroxyapatite enhances the biocompatibility and osseointegration of the polyethylene terephthalate artificial ligament, thus promoting graft-bone healing for anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction through the activation of ERK1/2 pathway.