Scaffolds fabricated from biodegradable polymers are used extensively in the field of tissue engineering. Many of these scaffolds are subjected to fluid flow, either in vivo or in bioreactors ex vivo. The goal of this study was to examine the effects of fluid flow on the degradation characteristics and kinetics of scaffolds in vitro. Scaffolds with different porosity and permeability values were fabricated using a copolymer of polylactic acid and polyglycolic acid. These scaffolds were subjected to degradation in phosphate buffered saline at 37°C for up to 6 weeks under two test conditions: static and flow (250μl/min). The porosity of the scaffolds decreased up to 2 weeks and then increased, while the elastic modulus first increased and then decreased over the course of the study. The mass and molecular weight of the scaffolds exhibited a steady decrease up to 6 weeks. The results further indicated that lower the porosity and permeability of the scaffolds, the faster their rate of degradation. Additionally, fluid flow decreased the degradation rate significantly. It is possible that the high rates of degradation observed here were due to autocatalysis of the degradation reaction by the acidic degradation products. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|State||Published - Dec 1 2000|
- Polyglycolic acid
- Polylactic acid
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering