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BIaxial STRETCHing of PLLA-WS2 nanocomposites FOR thinner and stronger BIOMEDical scaffolds

Objective

New materials are now opening clinical treatments in which a temporary scaffold is used to support regeneration of healthy tissue. The specific need that inspires our research is for thinner and stronger bioresorbable vascular scaffolds (BVS) for coronary heart disease. BVS are poised to replace metal stents due to the excellent clinical outcomes: beyond keeping the vessel open during the first six months after surgery, the BVS leaves behind a healthy blood vessel after the scaffold is gone, being completely absorbed by the body approximately two years after surgery. The material that has achieved clinical approval for BVS is poly(L-lactic acid), PLLA. It is not as strong and stiff as metals, so the scaffold is three times thicker than the metal stents, making it more difficult for surgeons to move through arteries to reach the site of the lesion. Thinner Scaffolds that can be seen by x-ray imaging during surgery would facilitate adoption of the technology and benefit thousands of patients in the EU and US. The proposed Action will provide the fundamental understanding needed to reinforce PLLA by tungsten disulphide (WS2) nanotubes to achieve both the strength and x-ray opacity needed. Improving materials for BVS requires an interdisciplinary approach by materials science, polymer processing, and bioengineering. The proposed Action will connect EU scientists with a polymer scientist at Caltech in the US who has specialized knowledge of PLLA BVS and the relevant structure-processing-property relationships (Kornfield). European scientists bring expertise in WS2 nanotubes that are powerful additives for enhancing polymer properties (Di Luccio), compounding polymers with nanotubes (McNally), biaxial stretching to induce strength and orientation in polymers (Menary), multiscale modeling to connect nanoscale to continuum scale (Figiel), multimethod characterization of structure in nanocomposites (Schiller) and the response of cells to nanoparticles (Kornfield).

Call for proposal

H2020-MSCA-RISE-2015
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

MSCA-RISE - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE)

Coordinator

AGENZIA NAZIONALE PER LE NUOVE TECNOLOGIE, L'ENERGIA E LO SVILUPPO ECONOMICO SOSTENIBILE
Address
Lungotevere Grande Ammiraglio Thaon Di Revel 76
000196 Roma
Italy
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 139 500

Participants (2)

THE QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY OF BELFAST
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 135 000
Address
University Road Lanyon Building
BT7 1NN Belfast
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
THE UNIVERSITY OF WARWICK
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 67 500
Address
Kirby Corner Road - University House
CV4 8UW Coventry
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

Partners (1)

CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGYCORP
United States
Address
East California Boulevard 1200
91125 Pasadena
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments