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Archive for the ‘Biomaterials’ Category

Background

Living learning, self-organising materials systems may sound like an engineer’s dream. But you only have to look down at your own body to see such a system at work. Millions of other systems are out there in the natural world. Mimicking their actions in the human body to aid the restoration of materials made by tissues – or to rehabilitate those who have suffered injuries – using smart prostheses, rapid communication systems and physical aids is a major part of the growing science of biomaterials. (more…)

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Scaffold materials for making matricies for bone tissue engineering include several classes of biomaterials: synthetic polymers, ceramics, native polymers, and composites.

Synthetic Polymers, both organic and inorganic, are used in a wide variety of biomedical applications. The polymers can be biodegradable or nondegradable. Examples of biodegradable polymers include polylactic acid and polyglycolic acid, and copolymers thereof. These FDA-approved polymers are currently used as suture materials, but are also being examined for uses such as bone, skin and liver substitutes. These polymers are broken down in the body hydrolytically to produce lactic acid and glycolic acid, respectively. Other biodegradable polymers currently being studied for tissue engineering applications include polycaprolactone, polyanhydrides, and polyphosphazenes. (more…)

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Background

Biomaterials improve the quality of life for an ever increasing number of people each year. The range of applications is vast and includes such things as joint and limb replacements, artificial arteries and skin, contact lenses, and dentures. While the implementation of these materials may be used for medical reasons such as the replacement of diseased tissues required to extend life expectancies, other reasons may include purely for aesthetic ones including breast implants. This increasing demand arises from an ageing population with higher quality of life expectations. The biomaterials community is producing new and improved implant materials and techniques to meet this demand, but also to aid the treatment of younger patients where the necessary properties are even more demanding. A counter force to this technological push is the increasing level of regulation and the threat of litigation. To meet these conflicting needs it is necessary to have reliable methods of characterisation of the material and material/host tissue interactions. (more…)

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