Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics Research Group

Papers in Scientific Journals

A New Approach Based on Injection Moulding to Produce Biodegradable Starch Based Polymeric Scaffolds: Morphology, Mechanical and Degradation Behaviour


One of the present challenges in polymer sca!old processing is the fabrication of three-dimensional (3D) architectures with an
adequate mechanical performance to be used in the tissue engineering of hard tissues. This paper describes a preliminary study on the
development of a new method to produce biodegradable sca!olds from a range of corn-starch-based polymers. In some cases,
hydroxlapatite was also used as a reinforcement of the biodegradable polymers. The developed methodology consists of a standard
conventional injection moulding process, on which a solid blowing agent based on carboxylic acids is used to generate the foaming of
the bulk of the moulded part. The proposed route allows for the production of sca!olds with a compact skin and a porous core, with
promising mechanical properties. By using the developed method it is possible to manufacture biodegradable polymer sca!olds in an
easy (melt-based processing) and reproducible manner. The sca!olds can be moulded into complex shapes, and the blowing additives
do not a!ect the non-cytotoxic behaviour of the starch-based materials. The materials produced using this method were evaluated
with respect to the morphology of the porous structure, and the respective mechanical properties and degradation behaviour. It was
demonstrated that it is possible to obtain, by a standard melt based processing route, 3D sca!olds with complex shapes that exhibit an
appropriate morphology, without decreasing signi"cantly the mechanical properties of the materials. It is believed that the
optimisation of the proposed processing methodology may lead to the production of sca!olds that might be used on the regeneration
of load-bearing tissues.

Biodegradable polymers, Hard-tissue engineering, Scaffold processing, Starch-based biomaterials
Open Access
Peer Reviewed
Year of Publication
Date Published
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