Rapid fabrication of rigid biodegradable scaffolds by excimer laser mask projection technique: A comparison between 248 and 308 nm

Year: 2013

Authors: Beke S., Anjum F., Ceseracciu L., Romano I., Athanassiou A., Diaspro A., Brandi F.

Autors Affiliation: Nanophysics Department, Italian Institute of Technology, Via Morego 30, I-16163 Genova, Italy

Abstract: High-resolution photocrosslinking of the biodegradable poly(propylene fumarate) (PPF) and diethyl fumarate (DEF), using pulsed laser light at 248 and 308 nm is presented. The curing depth can be modulated between a few hundreds of nm and a few µm when using 248 nm and ten to a hundred µm when using 308 nm. By adjusting the total fluence (pulse numbers×laser fluence) dose and the weight ratios of PPF, DEF, and the photoinitiator in the photocrosslinkable mixtures, the height of polymerized structures can be precisely tuned. The lateral resolution is evaluated by projecting a pattern of a grid with a specified line width and line spacing. Young\’s modulus of the cured parts is measured and found to be several GPa for both wavelengths, high enough to support bone formation. Several 2D and 2.5D microstructures, as well as porous 3D scaffolds fabricated by a layer-by-layer method, are presented. The results demonstrate that excimer laser-based photocuring is suitable for the fabrication of stiff and biocompatible structures with defined patterns of micrometer resolution in all three spatial dimensions.

Journal/Review: LASER PHYSICS

Volume: 23 (3)      Pages from: 035602-1  to: 035602-7

KeyWords: Poly (Propylene Fumarate); Diethyl fumarate (DEF); Biodegradable scaffold; Layer-by-layer methods; Excimer lasers
DOI: 10.1088/1054-660X/23/3/035602