Journal of dental research

Spatiotemporally controlled microchannels of periodontal mimic scaffolds.

PMID 25216511


Physiologic bioengineering of the oral, dental, and craniofacial complex requires optimized geometric organizations of fibrous connective tissues. A computer-designed, fiber-guiding scaffold has been developed to promote tooth-supporting periodontal tissue regeneration and functional restoration despite limited printing resolution for the manufacture of submicron-scaled features. Here, we demonstrate the use of directional freeze-casting techniques to control pore directional angulations and create mimicked topographies to alveolar crest, horizontal, oblique, and apical fibers of natural periodontal ligaments. For the differing anatomic positions, the gelatin displayed varying patterns of ice growth, determined via internal pore architectures. Regardless of the freezing coordinates, the longitudinal pore arrangements resulted in submicron-scaled diameters (~50 µm), along with corresponding high biomaterial porosity (~90%). Furthermore, the horizontal + coronal ([Formula: see text]) freezing orientation facilitated the creation of similar structures to major fibers in the periodontal ligament interface. This periodontal tissue-mimicking microenvironment is a potential tissue platform for the generation of naturally oriented ligamentous tissues consistent with periodontal ligament neogenesis.