Immunological evaluation of polystyrene and poly(ether imide) cell culture inserts with different roughness


For the successful clinical and biological application of polymers, their interaction with cells, tissues, and body fluids has to be well characterized. In order to investigate how the physical, chemical, and mechanical properties of candidate biomaterials influence cell behaviours, the testing sample is usually placed in commercially available cell culture plates. Thus, not only the testing sample itself but also the culture dish material might influence the cell behaviour. Therefore, an insert system was created to exclude this influence and allow investigations of the testing material solely. In this study micropatterned inserts prepared from polystyrene (PS) as well as from poly(ether imide) (PEI) with three different roughness levels of i) Rq = 0.12 μm (PS) and 0.23 μm (PEI); ii) Rq = 3.52 μm (PS) and 3.92 μm (PEI); and iii) Rq = 16.04 μm (PS) and 22.65 μm (PEI) were explored with regard of their immuno-compatibility including the determination of potential contaminations with endotoxins or other microbial products. The endotoxin levels of the inserts were determined to be less than 0.07 EU/mL, which is well below the U.S. Food and Drug Administration limit of 0.5 EU/mL and the survival of murine macrophages cultured in the inserts was not impaired. Activation of early immune mechanisms such as complement activation and the generation of reactive oxygen species could not be observed. All tested materials had no influence on the cytokine secretion from cells of whole human blood. The investigated inserts were immuno-compatible and apparently free of contaminations with microbial products. The roughness of the inserts had no stimulatory or inhibitory effect on early immune mechanisms. Conclusively, the 24-well plate insert systems introduced in this study allow investigating the interactions of tailored surface properties such as roughness with many other cell types, without the disadvantage of the standard commercially available culture vessels influencing the biomaterial testing.
QR Code: Link to publication