We evaluated whether the biological activity of the surface of titanium, when stored in an aqueous solution after ultraviolet (UV) treatment, is comparable to that of the surface immediately after UV treatment. We subjected Grade IV titanium discs with machined surfaces to UV radiation for 15 min and then tested them immediately and after storage for 28 days, with and without distilled H2O (dH2O). We evaluated the surface characteristics using surface profiling, contact angle analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and in terms of the surface zeta-potential. We determined the level of biological activity by analysing albumin adsorption, MC3T3-E1 and human mesenchymal cell adhesion and cytoskeleton development, as well as the production of intracellular reactive oxygen species between groups. The surface characteristics produced by the UV irradiation were maintained in dH2O for 28 days. We found that titanium stored in dH2O for 28 days after UV treatment exhibited enhanced protein adsorption, cell attachment, and cytoskeleton development. Titanium stored in dH2O for 28 days after UV irradiation exhibited a lower level of oxidative stress, comparable to that of the titanium immediately after UV treatment. UV treatment combined with wet storage can be used as a means of overcoming the biological aging of titanium.
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