An acellular xenogeneic scaffold derived from the bovine vocal fold lamina propria has shown some promise for in vitro vocal fold tissue engineering. To further explore the potential of the scaffold for cellular attachment, migration, and infiltration, as well as the transport of oxygen, proteins, and nutrients in vivo, this study examined the architecture of pores in the scaffold in terms of several key parameters. Porosity was determined using a standard fluid replacement method with a pycnometer. Average pore size and the pore size distribution were assessed using digital image analysis of scanning electron micrographs. The intrinsic permeability to water was measured using a custom-built hydrostatic pressure apparatus as an estimation of the overall porous nature of the acellular scaffold. The results indicated that the bovine acellular scaffold has a reasonably high porosity (90.49 ± 4.33%), a proper pore size distribution (>60% of the pores with equivalent diameters ≥10 μm and < 100 μm) that could facilitate cellular attachment and infiltration, as well as a relatively high intrinsic permeability (0.21-3.21 darcy) for the transport of soluble factors. These findings offered preliminary support of the potential of the scaffold for facilitating functional extracellular matrix remodeling in vocal fold reconstruction.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering