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Nanoscale tailoring of the surface properties of biomedical devices by layer-by-layer technique

V. Chiono, I. Carmagnola, F. Boccafoschi, P. Gentile, C. Tonda-Turo, M. Del Pilar Camacho Leal, M. Ballarini, G. Ciardelli
Politecnico di Torino, IT

Keywords: endothelialization, layer-by-layer, stent, vascular tissue engineering


The layer-by-layer (LbL) technique is a versatile solvent-free process allowing the coating of surfaces with uniform ultrathin multilayered films to tailor surface properties and structure at the nanoscale. LbL approach is a promising tool to engineer interfaces with biomimetic properties for the control of cell and protein adhesion. A new generation of coronary stents allowing rapid re-endothelialization on the stent surface is needed to provide protection against thrombus formation and to minimize restenosis. Different approaches have been attempted to accelerate surface endothelialization of stents: for instance, stent surface has been seeded with endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) or coated with anti-CD34 antibodies for the capture of patient’s EPCs. Drawbacks of these approaches include the use of biologically active substances which makes the production and sterilization processes difficult and the relatively low content of EPCs in blood. LbL is an alternative simple approach for the preparation of functional surfaces with anti-thrombogenic properties and supporting endothelialization for vascular tissue engineering and stent coating. In this work, stainless steel plates were used as model substrates for metal stents and coated with alternate layers of heparin and poly(diallyl dimethylammonium) chloride, after a pre-functionalisation with 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane. An accurate physico-chemical and biological characterisation was performed.
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