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Author Notes:

Address for Correspondence: Barbara D. Boyan, Ph.D., Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience, Georgia Institute of Technology, 315 Ferst Drive, NW (Suite 1108), Atlanta, GA 30332-0363, Phone: 404-385-4108, FAX: 404-894-2291, barbara.boyan@bme.gatech.edu


Research Funding:

This research was supported by USPHS AR052102 and the ITI Foundation.

RAG is partially supported by a fellowship from the Government of Panama (IFARHU-SENACYT).

Support for the work of TM and YC was provided by the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research (Award No. FA9550-09-1-0162).

Support for the work of KHS was provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences (Award No. DE-SC0002245).

The sTiAlV and rTiAlV specimens as well as the Endoskeleton® TT implants were provided by Titan Spine LLC.


  • Science & Technology
  • Technology
  • Engineering, Biomedical
  • Materials Science, Biomaterials
  • Engineering
  • Materials Science
  • Metallic implants
  • Osteointegration
  • Titanium-aluminum -vanadium alloy
  • Bone
  • Nanostructures
  • Osteoblast differentiation
  • TI

Differential responses of osteoblast lineage cells to nanotopographically-modified, microroughened titanium-aluminum-vanadium alloy surfaces


Journal Title:



Volume 33, Number 35


, Pages 8986-8994

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Surface structural modifications at the micrometer and nanometer scales have driven improved success rates of dental and orthopaedic implants by mimicking the hierarchical structure of bone. However, how initial osteoblast-lineage cells populating an implant surface respond to different hierarchical surface topographical cues remains to be elucidated, with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) or immature osteoblasts as possible initial colonizers. Here we show that in the absence of any exogenous soluble factors, osteoblastic maturation of primary human osteoblasts (HOBs) but not osteoblastic differentiation of MSCs is strongly influenced by nanostructures superimposed onto a microrough Ti6Al4V (TiAlV) alloy. The sensitivity of osteoblasts to both surface microroughness and nanostructures led to a synergistic effect on maturation and local factor production. Osteoblastic differentiation of MSCs was sensitive to TiAlV surface microroughness with respect to production of differentiation markers, but no further enhancement was found when cultured on micro/nanostructured surfaces. Superposition of nanostructures to microroughened surfaces affected final MSC numbers and enhanced production of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) but the magnitude of the response was lower than for HOB cultures. Our results suggest that the differentiation state of osteoblast-lineage cells determines the recognition of surface nanostructures and subsequent cell response, which has implications for clinical evaluation of new implant surface nanomodifications.

Copyright information:

© 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

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