• surface modification;
  • biodegradable polymer;
  • endothelial cells;
  • pore size;
  • PLGA (80/20);
  • PLLA


The endothelization of polymers using surface modification has received great attention. In particular, creation of physical surface features such as craters or pores has been an active area of research. However, there have been no reported studies of the effects of pore sizes (wide range) and interpore distance on endothelial cell growth. This report details the study done on endothelial cell attachment on the surfaces of polymers modified by porogen leaching. The polymeric system studied includes PLLA and PLGA (80/20). Factors such as porogen type, pore size, and interpore distance were varied, and the surface was evaluated for its influence on endothelial cell growth. Three groups of pore sizes were evaluated: small (5–20 μm), medium (20–45 μm), and large pores (45–90 μm). Two porogens were evaluated: sugar and gelatin. In addition to counting the attached endothelial cells, their proliferation was also quantified. Pore size and interpore distances were evaluated using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and cell morphology was studied by staining with crystal violet. Analysis of variance demonstrated that the main parameters, pore size and interpore distance were significant in endothelial cell growth. In PLGA (80/20), it was found that endothelial cell growth was enhanced by smaller pore size and lower interpore distance, whereas the growth was poor on PLLA regardless of pore features. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res, 2008