Document Type : Research Article
Department of Solid State Engineering, University of Chemistry and Technology Prague, Technická 5, 166 28 Prague 6, Czech Republic
Nowadays, new materials for the preparation of synthetic bone grafts are being sought after. Bones consist mainly of collagen fibres and hydroxyapatite crystals, so using synthetic grafts with a similar structure is logical. Therefore, a composite material was prepared by adding hydroxyapatite particles in the cultivation medium of bacterial nanocellulose (in-situ method). The composites were dried via air-drying and lyophilization to obtain solid materials. The formation of the composite was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy, which showed cellulose (OH vibrations) as well as hydroxyapatite (PO43- vibrations) absorption bands. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy showed presence of 14 wt% of calcium and 48 wt% of phosphorus in the composites. The structure of the hydroxyapatite crystals embedded in fibrous cellulose was observed by scanning electron microscopy. The higher porosity of the lyophilized samples was confirmed as well. Water contact angle of the air-dried composites was lower (25 ± 3.6)° compared to pure bacterial nanocellulose (30 ± 2.7)°. The mechanical strength of the air-dried composites was (20.3 ± 7.9) MPa. These results suggest the prepared material is promising for construction of synthetic bone grafts.