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09.03.2018 | Original Article | Ausgabe 3/2019

European Journal of Trauma and Emergency Surgery 3/2019

Cultivation of EPC and co-cultivation with MSC on β-TCP granules in vitro is feasible without fibronectin coating but influenced by scaffolds’ design

European Journal of Trauma and Emergency Surgery > Ausgabe 3/2019
Philipp Störmann, Juliane Kupsch, Kerstin Kontradowitz, Maximilian Leiblein, René Verboket, Caroline Seebach, Ingo Marzi, Dirk Henrich, Christoph Nau



Meanwhile, the osteoconductive properties of frequently used synthetic bone grafts can be improved by the use of osteoinductive cells and growth factors. Nevertheless, the cultivation of endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) seems to be difficult and requires a pre-conditioning of the scaffolds with fibronectin. Additionally, the influence of the scaffolds’ design on cell cultivation is not fully elucidated.


As scaffold, a commercially available β-tricalcium phosphate was used. 5 × 105 EPC, or 5 × 105 MSC or a combination of each 2.5 × 105 cells was seeded onto the granules. We investigated seeding efficiency, cell morphology, cell metabolism, adherence, apoptosis and gene expression of EPC and MSC in this in vitro study on days 2, 6 and 10.


Total number of adherent cells was higher on the β-TCP without fibronectin coating. The number of cells in all approaches significantly declined when a solid β-TCP was used. Metabolic activity of MSC was comparable throughout the scaffolds and increased until day 10. Additionally, the amount of supernatants VEGF was higher for MSC than for EPC.


Our results demonstrate that a coating of the scaffold for successful cultivation of EPC in vitro is not necessary. Furthermore, our study showed that structural differences of the scaffolds significantly influenced cell adherence and metabolic activity. Thereby, the influence on EPC seems to be higher than on MSC.

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