Mesoporous TiO2 as a nanostructured substrate for cell culture and cell patterning

Sangphil Park, Sung Hoon Ahn, Hyun Jong Lee, Ui Seok Chung, Jong Hak Kim, Won Gun Koh

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5 Citations (Scopus)


We investigated the behaviors of mammalian cells such as adhesion, morphology and proliferation on mesoporous TiO2-coated glass slides using NIH-3T3 fibroblasts as a model cell. A sol-gel process using amphiphilic poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC)-g-poly(oxyethylene methacrylate) (POEM) graft copolymer as a template produced defect or crack-free and homogeneous mesoporous TiO2 films over a large area with high porosity and good connectivity. Cells grown on the mesoporous TiO2 surfaces exhibited less spreading and had more filopodia than cells on the flat glass slides. The nanotopographical cues from the mesoporous TiO2 resulted in the formation of more focal adhesions, promoting cell adhesion and proliferation without decreasing cell viability and functionality. We also demonstrated the capability of controlling spatial placement of cells onto chemically and topologically structured templates by fabricating poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) hydrogel micropatterns on mesoporous TiO2 films. Because a hydrogel precursor solution could infiltrate and become crosslinked within the multilayered mesoporous TiO2 films, the resultant hydrogel micropatterns were firmly anchored on the substrate without the use of adhesion-promoting monolayers. While nanoscale topographic cues from mesoporous structure contributed to enhancement of cellular behaviors, different chemistry between cell-repelling PEG hydrogel and cell-adhesive mesoporous region facilitated confinement of cells on the micrometer scale. This study suggests that developed mesoporous TiO2 films hold high potential for bioapplications showing high biocompatibility as surface coating materials for implants or as biomimetic platforms for cell patterning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23673-23680
Number of pages8
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number45
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Dec 7

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)


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