Novel current-conducting composite substrates for exposing osteoblasts to alternating current stimulation

R. Bizios, K. R. Ullmann, P. R. Supronowicz, P. M. Ajayan, D. W. Metzger, B. P. Arulanandam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

368 Scopus citations


The present study demonstrates that novel nanocomposites consisting of blends of polylactic acid and carbon nanotubes effectively can be used to expose cells to electrical stimulation. When osteoblasts cultured on the surfaces of these nanocomposites were exposed to electric stimulation (10 μA at 10 Hz) for 6 h/day for various periods of time, there was a 46% increase in cell proliferation after 2 days, a 307% increase in the concentration of extracellular calcium after 21 consecutive days, and upregulation of mRNA expression for collagen type-I after both 1 and 21 consecutive days. These results provide evidence that electrical stimulation delivered through novel, current-conducting polymer/nanophase composites promotes osteoblast functions that are responsible for the chemical composition of the organic and inorganic phases of bone. Furthermore, this evidence elucidates aspects of the cellular/molecular-level mechanisms involved in new bone formation under electrical stimulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)499-506
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 5 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbon nanotubes
  • Current-conducting biomaterials
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Osteoblast functions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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