The molecular mechanism for effects of TiN coating on NiTi alloy on endothelial cell function.

PMID 24818882


The aim of this study is to systematically investigate the molecular mechanism of different effects of nickel titanium (NiTi) alloy surface and titanium nitride (TiN) coating on endothelial cell function. Release of nickel (Ni) ion from bare and TiN-coated NiTi alloys and proliferation of endothelial cells on the two materials were evaluated, and then influence of the two materials on cellular protein expression profiles was investigated by proteomic technology. Subsequently, proteomic data were analyzed with bioinformatics analyses and further validated using a series of biological experiments. Results showed that although the two materials did not affect cell proliferation, the Ni ions released from bare NiTi alloy generated inhibition on pathways associated with actin cytoskeleton, focal adhesion, energy metabolism, inflammation, and amino acid metabolism. In comparison, TiN coating not only effectively prevented release of Ni ions from NiTi alloy, but also promoted actin cytoskeleton and focal adhesion formation, increased energy metabolism, enhanced regulation of inflammation, and promoted amino acid metabolism. Furthermore, the two processes, "the initial mediation of adsorbed serum protein layer to endothelial cell adhesion and growth on the two materials" from our previous study, and "the following action of the two materials on cellular protein expression profile", were linked up and comprehensively analyzed. It was found that in stage of cell adhesion (within 4xa0h), release of Ni ions from bare NiTi alloy was very low, and the activation of adsorbed proteins to cell adhesion and growth related biological pathways (such as regulation of actin cytoskeleton, and focal adhesion pathways) was almost as same as TiN-coated NiTi alloy. This indicated that the released Ni ions did not affect the mediation of adsorbed proteins to endothelial cell adhesion. However, in stage of cell growth and proliferation, the release of Ni ions from bare NiTi alloy increased with time and reached a higher level, which inhibited endothelial cell function at molecular level, whereas TiN coating improved endothelial cell function.