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Über dieses Buch

This collection of recent activities provides researchers and scientists with the latest trends in characterization and developments of biosystems and biomaterials. Well known experts present their research in materials for drug delivery, dental implants and filling materials, biocompatible membranes, bioactive surface coatings and bio-compatible and eco-sustainable building materials. In The book covers also topics like microorganisms, the human eye, the musculoskeletal system and human body parts.



Influence of Al2O3/Pr Nanoparticles on Soil, Air and Water Microorganisms

One of the greatest challenges for science nowadays is the protection of the natural environment. Synthetic nanoparticles are released into the environment with industrial and household wastes, and their release can be expected to increase constantly with increasing use of nanoparticles in industry and their increasing share in various consumer products. The penetration of nanoparticles into the water, soil, or air ecosystems may disturb seriously the functioning of the natural environment. In the present study we examined how the active aluminum nano-oxide in the gamma form used as a neutral carrier for the praseodymium (Pr) nanoparticles affected their behavior. Praseodymium is very useful in many branches of science and in everyday life, although in its free form, it is commonly considered to be cyto-toxic, eco-toxic, and phyto-toxic. Our experiments were aimed to find whether the aluminum nano-oxide can act as a nano-stabilizer for the metal nanoparticles, and also to examine whether their bounding on the carrier decreases or eliminates their toxicity to the soil or water microorganisms present in the natural environment. Our experiments have shown that the aluminum nano-oxide is suitable to function as a nano-stabilizer for the Pr nanoparticles. The Al2O3/Pr nanoparticles produced by the dry (conducted in an organic solvent) thermal decomposition of an organic precursor, are not ecotoxic, or less ecotoxic to bacteria isolated from environmental samples, in particular to gram-positive caryopsis of the Micrococcus and Staphylococcus genera isolated from air samples.
Paweł Polis, Paulina Mosdorf, Ewa Karwowska, Agnieszka Jastrzębska, Andrzej Olszyna, Antoni Kunicki, Ryszard Piramidowicz, Krzysztof Anders, Anna Jusza

Hardness Improvement of Dental Amalgam Using Zinc Oxide and Aluminum Oxide Nanoparticles

Strength tests of a dental amalgam material were conducted. Zinc oxide and aluminium oxide nanoparticles were used as fillers to enhance the hardness and other mechanical properties of dental amalgam material. The zinc oxide nanoparticles were synthesized by using a sol–gel technique, the samples of which were characterized by X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope (FESEM) and Raman spectroscopy and then mixed with the material and compacted into cylindrical-shaped pellets for green density, compressibility and Vickers hardness evaluation. Increment of 183 % in hardness was observed with average Vickers hardness of 0.95 GPa by using 250 °C zinc oxide as nanofiller. On the other hand, the Al2O3 nanoparticles filled composite observed 1.12 GPa of average Vickers hardness with 229 % of increment as compared to without the fillers. All in all, that the application of Al2O3 nanoparticles as filler result in improved hardness. This work offers the dentistry industry a potential contender in the market place.
Noorhana Yahya, Poppy Puspitasari, Noor Rasyada Ahmad Latiff

Review of Rapid Prototyping Techniques for Tissue Engineering Scaffolds Fabrication

Tissue engineering scaffold is a 3D construction that acts as a template for tissue regeneration. The scaffold should have some basic requirements including biocompatibility, suitable mechanical properties, appropriate surface chemistry, high porosity and interconnectivity. Although several conventional techniques such as solvent casting and gas forming are utilized in scaffold fabrication, these processes show poor interconnectivity and uncontrollable porosity of the produced scaffolds. However, Rapid Prototyping (RP) techniques which are a group of advanced manufacturing processes can produce custom made objects directly from computer data such as Computer Aided Design (CAD), Computed Tomography (CT) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) data. Using RP fabrication techniques, constructions with controllable and complex internal architecture with appropriate mechanical properties can be achieved.The present chapter intends to provide an overview of the current state of the art in the area of tissue engineering scaffolds fabrication, using advanced RP processes. The present work highlights also the existing limitations in addition to future prospects in scaffold fabrication via RP techniques.
Osama A. M. Abdelaal, Saied M. H. Darwish

Molecular Dynamics Study of Oligomer-Membrane Complexes with Biomedical Relevance

The use of liposomes as drug delivery systems (DDS) is well known. However, the stability of liposomes (shelf stability in bloodstream) for this kind of application is an issue. One way to address this problem is to develop polymer-liposome complexes to provide an improved stability as well as better selectivity characteristics. This work reports a molecular dynamics (MD) study on polymer-membrane complexes with biomedical interest. A bilayer membrane was used to mimic the liposome surface, whereas the targeted isopropylacrylamide based polymers were replaced by representative oligomers. The MD simulations were performed by using the united-atoms 53A6 GROMOS force-field, with the GROMACS 4.5.4 package in a Linux cluster. Two oligomers were tested, and their interaction with a bilayer surface was analyzed. In order to understand how the oligomer-membrane complex reacts under different thermal environments, the systems were simulated at several temperatures. It was found that the studied oligomers presented distinct effects in the bilayer. The inclusion of cholesterol at the end of isopropylacrylamide chain enabled the permeation of the oligomer and promoted the bilayer stability. On the other hand, both oligomers showed the common tendency of promoting the penetration of water molecules to the bilayer center.
André F. Ferreira, Patrícia Alves, Jorge F. Coelho, Maria H. Gil, Pedro N. Simões

Methods to Prevent or Mitigate Accidents with Large Animals

Although accidents with animals represent a small portion in the official statistics, these accidents have an economic effect. The regulatory costs in Germany added up to an average of 370–464 million Euros annually in the years between 2000 and 2005. The insurance companies registered between 210,000 and 235,000 deer accidents on average every year. The largest part of the data collected by the insurance companies is accidents with damage to property. But accidents with large animals are a danger to vehicle occupants. German statistics for accidents with animals for this period show between 18 and 28 fatally injured persons and between 580 and 750 severely injured and 2,100–2,600 light casualties every year. Accidents that are caused by evasive maneuvers causing running-off track and finally colliding with the infrastructure or causing a cross-over collision have not been taken into account. The aim of this investigation is to evaluate typical accident scenarios and accident simulation with large animals. In particular, the effects on the vehicle occupants are investigated by multi-body simulation methods. The occupant load for accidents with animals is determined and influencing factors on the load are derived. Based on these investigations, avoidability scenarios are developed and methods are introduced that are relevant to the vehicle (active and passive safety) and also to the infrastructure and the driver. The objective is to develop effective counteractions in order to avoid accidents with animals or at least mitigate the accident aftermath.
Wolfgang Sinz, Heinz Hoschopf, Stefan Kirschbichler, Ernst Tomasch, Hermann Steffan, Saied Mohamed H. Darwish, Motaz Almodimigh

Using Quality Function Deployment Methodology to Translate Qualitative to Quantitative Requirements in the Design a of a Knee Re-trainer

In this chapter, the design of a knee re-trainer is reported. This equipment is used in the rehabilitation of geriatric patients. The main objective is to recover the residual capacity in individuals who have a disease related with arthritis. Quality Function Deployment (QFD) was used in order to fulfill the requirements of patients, therapists and orthopedists. The designed prototype helps to recover residual muscular capacity of the knee. Also, the constitutive elements of knee articulation can be re-educated. Good results have been obtained during the initial tests.
Alejandro Luna-Avilés, Luis Héctor Hernández-Gómez, Juan Alfonso Beltrán-Fernández, Guillermo Urriolagoitia-Calderón, Diana Gómez-Michel, Dulce María Martínez-Espinoza, Efrén Villegas-Acosta, Guillermo Urriolagoitia-Sosa

Research Advances and Perspective of Multi-Articulated and Robotic Hands

The development of prostheses for upper limbs is extensive and complex. Actually, the results obtained by our group in the design on a multiarticulated hand prosthesis are encouraging. Its design has to satisfy essential functions for the development of various activities. Besides, such prosthesis has to be versatile and a high precision in the execution of movements has to be satisfied. On the other hand, amputation of one extremity at any level, definitely, affects the quality of life of an individual, inducing a high emotional impact. In this chapter, an overview of the development of hand prostheses is provided. Main aspects of the state of art are mentioned. In the second part, the technological developments involved in the implementation of a multiarticulated hand prosthesis and robotic fingers by our group are discussed. With this information, the future trends in the design of robotic hands and the application of evolutive algorithms in the design of hand prostheses are discussed.
Luis Héctor Hernández-Gómez, Alejandro Tonatiu Velázquez-Sánchez, Esther Lugo-González, Christopher René Torres San Miguel, Juan Alfonso Beltrán-Fernández, Guillermo Urriolagoitia-Calderón, Guillermo Urriolagoitia-Sosa, Mauricio Aron Pérez-Romero

Effects of Rice Husk as a Precursor on Crystallization Kinetic of Glass Ceramics Derived from 45S5 Bioglass®

The crystallization kinetic of glass ceramics derived from 45S5 Bioglass® made from rice husk ash was studied. In order to investigate and control the sintering process of these samples, the crystallization kinetic of the major phase was studied by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) in the range of 700–800 °C and temperature-time-transformation (TTT) curves were established. Differential thermal analysis (DTA) was performed to investigate the thermal parameters of the prepared glasses. Phase evolution of the glass–ceramics sintered at temperatures ranging between 600 and 900 °C was investigated by Scanning electron microscope (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) techniques. All thermal parameters (the first glass transition temperature; T g1, the softening point; T s, the crystallization temperature; T c and the second glass transition temperature; T g2) of the prepared glass containing rice husk precursor were found to be lower than that of the controlled glass. It was found that the major crystalline phase in all sintered samples was Na2Ca2Si3O9.
Wilaiwan Leenakul, Sukum Eitssayeam, Gobwute Rujijangul, Tawee Tunkasiri, Natee Tongsiri, Kamonpan Pengpat

Analysis of the Bioactive Surface of Ti-35Nb-7Zr Alloy After Alkaline Treatment and Solution Body Fluid

The purpose of this work was to evaluate the Ti-35Nb-7Zr experimental alloy after surface treatment and soaking in solution body fluid (SBF) to form bonelike apatite. The Ti-35Nb-7Zr alloy was produced from commercially pure materials (Ti, Nb and Zr) by an arc melting furnace. All ingots were submitted to sequences of heat treatment (1100 °C/2 h and water quenching), cold working by swaging procedures and heat treatment (1100 °C/2 h and water quenching). Discs with 13 mm diameter and 3 mm in thickness were cut. The samples were immersed in NaOH aqueous solution with 5 M at 60 °C for 72 h, washed with distilled water and dried at 40 °C for 24 h. After the alkaline treatment, samples were heat treated in both conditions: at 450 and 600 °C for 1 h in an electrical furnace in air. Then, they were soaking in SBF for 24 h to form an apatite layer on the surface. The surfaces were investigated by using scanning electron microscope (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and contact angle measurements. The results indicate that calcium phosphate could form on surface of Ti-35Nb-7Zr experimental alloy.
S. G. Schneider, A. L. A. Escada, E. T. A. Carvalho, A. P. R. Alves-Claro

Structural and Compositional Characterization of Silverfil Amalgam

SilverfilTM (Silverfil dental Products, Malaysia) is a commercially available dental amalgam which is based on silver (Ag) and mercury (Hg) only. The objective of this study was to determine the structural state and chemical composition of the starting materials and presence of mercury in the resulting amalgam. All the starting materials of the Silverfil amalgam were characterized using Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM-EDX), X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS). Analysis using FESEM depicts that amalgam (Ag2Hg3) clusters were formed as a matrix consisting of crystalline solid. The EDX analysis showed that all the chemical composition of the starting materials consists of Ag and Hg only. The XRD analysis also revealed that Ag and Hg form as isometric (cubic)-hexoctahedral with unit cells of 10.06 Å. This value is similar to a naturally occurring mineral called “Moschellandsbergite” which is found in the district of Landsberg in Germany. The XPS analysis showed that there was no free mercury (Hg0) present in the starting material. When the resulting amalgam was analysed, the binding energy of Hg (4f) photoelectron peaks were at 101 eV and 100.3 eV confirming the presence of bonded mercury with silver alloy (Ag2Hg3). These studies show that there is no free mercury present in Silverfil amalgam.
Chanthiriga Ramasindarum, Vengadaesvaran Balakrishnan, Noor Hayaty Abu Kasim, Mohd Ambar Yarmo

Synthesis and Characterization of Poly (l-Lactic Acid) for Use in Drug Delivery System

Hydrogels are being used in several applications in the biomedical and pharmaceutical fields, which can be attributed to their satisfactory performance when implanted in alive organisms, as they have good biocompatibility and low toxicity. The possibility of fabrication in many geometric shapes also makes these hydrogels are widely used. Among biomedical applications, are surgical sutures, implanted materials, soft contact lenses and membranes for use in controlled bioactive substances delivery systems. The large increase in applications and the scientific and clinical interest in drug delivery systems have prompted several new developments of these systems. The main objective of this study was to synthesize and characterize a poly (L-lactic acid) (PLLA) hydrogel, biocompatible that can be used in a controlled drug delivery system. The PLLA is used as a biocompatible hydrogel because it presents the main high water absorption characteristic required for the formation of a hydrogel. This absorption is favored by the presence of oxygen, and also by the formation of cross-links. Although the PLLA is a synthetic polymer, it is used as a basic material for different applications in biomedicine, since it is non-toxic and also not carcinogenic. Solutions at different concentration were made with PLLA and crosslinker. Several tests were performed to verify the possible changes in the properties of PLLA. The characterization of the films obtained by casting PLLA solution at different concentration was carried through several tests as differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and tensile strength.
Mauro Cesar Terence, Nilson Casimiro Pereira, Sonia Braunstein Faldini, Leila Figueiredo de Miranda, Cristiane Doria Kalupgian, Gabriel Domingues de Souza

Histological Analysis of the Osseointegration of Ti-30Ta Dental Implants After Surface Treatment

Metallic biomaterials are used to reinforce or to restore the form and function of hard tissues. Implants and prosthesis are used to replace shoulders, knees, hips and teeth. When these materials are inserted in bone several biological reactions happen. This process can be associated to surface properties (topography, roughness and surface energy). In this work, the influence of biomimetic surface treatment in the osseointegration of Ti-30Ta dental implants was evaluated. Ingots were obtained from titanium and tantalum by using an arc-melting furnace. They were submitted to heat treatment at 1,100 °C for 1 h, cooled in water and cold worked by swaging. Then, screw-shaped implants (2.0 mm diameter by 2.5 mm length) were manufactured and they were implanted in a rat’s femur. Animals were divided into two groups: untreated (control group) and treated (biomimetic surface treatment). They were sacrificed 30 days after implantation. For histological analysis, implants with surrounding tissue were removed and immersed in formaldehyde. Samples were embedded in polymethyl methacrylate and after polymerization, cut with a saw, polished and mounted on glass slides. The results obtained suggest that biomimetic surface treatment was able to promote an increase osseointegration on the surface of dental implants.
Ana Paula Rosifini Alves Claro, João Augusto Guedes de Oliveira, Ana Lúcia do Amaral Escada, Luciana Maria Ferreira Carvalho, Mário Jefferson Quirino Louzada, Maria Cristina Rosifini Alves Rezende

Innovation Technology to Engineer 3D Living Organs as Intelligent Diagnostic Tools

Three-dimensional (3D) in vitro living organs that can mimic organ and tissue structure and function have great impact on developing advanced biological science and technology from basic biology to drug discovery, and will have great impact on the future of science to use human organs and tissues not only as new therapeutic approaches but also as intelligent biological tools for many applications such as early detection of newly formed diseases, next generation of diagnostic tools, and an alternative energy source called “bio-energy” devices. Many 3D technology have been already developed, but most of these technologies require expensive equipment, large sample volumes, long time process and fabrication, and the most disadvantages of them is that they are too far from the nature of human organs. Because of the above problems, research and development on drug discovery, regenerative medicine, biotech and pharmaceutical industries are very costly and takes several years to bring a single drug/product to the marketing. The goal of 3D technology is to merge biomaterials science, nanotechnology, and biological principles to generate 3D in vitro living organs, to be called human on chip to mimic organs/tissues in order to partially reduce the amount of in vitro and in vivo animal testing, clinical trials, and to solve the above problems. In a single word; its goal is to jump from bench to market in a low cost and short time. At the nanoscale, chemistry and materials are used to fabricate novel type of hydrogels that are similar to human organs, infusing the cell with extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules and gradients of signaling molecules to influence cell development and aggregation. At microscales, fabrication technology such as photolithography is used to produce devices in a variety of shapes and sizes. These products will have to mimic natural organ and tissues from view point of physical, chemical, and biological properties to in order to be used as intelligent tools.
Hossein Hosseinkhani

Soil: A Material for Bio-Compatible and Eco-Sustainable Contemporary Buildings

For long time the research has been addressing towards the creation and the design of “high tech” components for buildings with an high performance level in any kind of situation, so as to increase a global scale dissemination and thus to ensure large market segments and wide economic incomes. This logic, based on production of goods rather than on saving resources, has provided, upon time, a number of negative effects, such as the enlargement of prime matter and pure energy source consumption, but also a massification of the architecture language and a cultural flatting, by proposing stereotypes and formal layouts which were insensitive to site diversity and peculiarity. Studies made by the authors on the Mediterranean area, its construction traditions and its social and cultural differences, focused on the presence of various invariant lines, due to similar climatic, geological, historic and human conditions, has shown that, during the whole pre-industrial period, those conditions have led to the affirmation of such techniques and materials strictly depending on the peculiar characters of each zone. The various regions, even presenting the aforesaid common and distinctive features, can be often compared to each other, and provide hints for new research currents: “low-tech” materials, and thus at low embodied energy, by exploiting a number of local resources and various configuration solutions, allowing to obtain buildings that can adapt to different site conditions, and can provide a clear saving as far as both economic and environmental items are concerned. The Rammed Earth and Adobe, even in contemporary building applications, object of the proposed paper, have been demonstrated to own various relevant characters, since they appear as good compromises between thermal mass and insulation and hold good hygroscopic regulation capacity, by absorbing and giving back the humidity to the environment. These properties allow to achieve eco-efficiency aims, by limiting resource consumption, as well as bio-compatible objectives, by providing users’ health and comfort. Our research groups have carried out theoretical and experimental research that led to the chance of re-employing this traditional material within innovative products, thus considering soil, still nowadays, as a very good construction material. Case studies in Italy and Portugal are shown.
Dora Francese, Paulo Mendonça, Luca Buoninconti

New Materials for Ecological Building Products

In this chapter, recent activities of our research group in the field of innovative materials are shown, inspired by the need of developing and using lower impact and better performing materials. Examples of use of materials from renewable resources, of biopolymers, of innovative reinforcing fibres and of hybrid organic–inorganic composites are discussed. The aim is to better integrate the approaches of material engineering with the issues emerging from sustainable architecture by exploiting the potential in lowering the overall impact of different kinds of materials. The output will be that of obtaining building products with a de-materialized production process, i.e. which can reduce at minimum the use of matter and energy during the various stages of the production itself, which can be bio-compatible during all the phases of the life cycle and which can preview a dismissing process at closed cycle so as to avoid as much as possible the impacts to ecosystems. In particular, this chapters deals with the opportunity of applying those innovative materials to building components.
Dora Francese, Giuseppe Mensitieri, Salvatore Iannace, Claudia Balestra

Analysis of Failure Mechanism of Forced Convection in the Cornea of the Human Eye

The metabolic secretions produced by the cells inside the human eye are accumulated simultaneously in the cornea, in the trabecular meshwork, in the lens and retina. Genetic factors are directly related to how the metabolic secretion clumps occur and the form of accumulation is very specific according to the movements of the eyes, arising from activities performed by the patient, so neither outcome can be predictable. This paper analyzes the publications that deal with the anatomical structure and biophysics of the eyes as well as the symptoms that were observed during the treatment of presbyopia by the first author to explain that the deterioration of the forced convection mechanism for transporting the nutrients and metabolic secretions provoke a reduction in the movement of metabolic secretions causing its dehydration by decanting. This can cause various vision problems such as those symptomatically known as amblyopia, as lateral visual dominance due to the permanent inequality of the corneal curvature radius and as glare discomfort or glare disability that in many cases, requires the individual to use dark or photochromic lenses.
Humberto Dória Silva, Luiz Cláudio Pereira Dória, Cristiana Pereira Dória, Cristiane Pereira Dória, Maria do Carmo Tatiana Dória Silva, Humberto Dória Silva Júnior, Maria Tamires Dória Silva

Microstructure and Properties of Nanostructured Calcium Phosphate/Titania Porous Coatings via Micro Arc Oxidation

Crystalline Calcium Phosphate-TiO2 nanostructured porous layers were fabricated via micro arc oxidation technique under different times to investigate how growth time effects on morphology, topography, phase structure, and chemical composition of the layers. Considering the SEM and AFM observations, the layers showed a porous morphology with a rough surface where the pores size increased with time. The highest porosity and roughness was achieved at intermediate times. XRD technique revealed that the layers consisted of α-Tri Calcium Phosphate (α-TCP), hydroxyapatite (HAp), anatase, and calcium titanate phases. It was observed that the HAp relative content reached its maximum value at intermediate times. It was found that the HAp phase gradually forms over a TiO2 inner layer during the MAO growth. Based on XRD patterns, the α-TCP and HAp crystalline sizes were determined as ~32.4 and ~27.7 nm, respectively.
Sakine Abbasi, Hamid Reza Rezaie, Farhad Golestani-Fard

Simulation of Variation of Intraocular Pressure

The movement of the eyes, in the left–right direction causes changes in the curvature of their corneas. This change of curvature causes a transient state of the intraocular pressure due to variations in the capacity of ocular chambers. This is the physical process of forced convection, so there is the transport of nutrients and elimination of metabolic secretions. Understandably, the failure of the process of forced convection can cause the retention of metabolic secretions that can be eliminated after a long time and may result in concentrations of excessive metabolic secretions causing contamination of the aqueous humor in the anterior chamber. This excessive metabolic mass in the anterior chamber can obstruct the trabecular meshwork, as a result increasing the output resistance of the aqueous stream and increasing the intraocular pressure. A simulator was developed to demonstrate the existence of this transient state of intraocular pressure and shows that reducing the formation of aqueous humor reduces intraocular pressure. However, simulations also showed the existence of adverse conditions in which the intraocular pressure has a high peak pressure, depending on the conditions of the eye and of the personal habits of the individual, can develop into normal-tension glaucoma (also called low-tension glaucoma). Therefore this study provides suggestions for preventing the normal-tension glaucoma a long time before the onset of symptoms.
Humberto Dória Silva, Luiz Cláudio Pereira Dória, Cristiana Pereira Dória, Cristiane Pereira Dória, Maria do Carmo Tatiana Dória Silva, Humberto Dória Silva Júnior, Maria Tamires Dória Silva
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