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Nanocrystalline Zn2+ and SO42- binary doped fluorohydroxyapatite: A novel biomaterial with enhanced osteoconductive and osteoinconductive properties

In this study, we have successfully doped hydroxyapatite (HA) with zinc (Zn2+), sulphate (SO42-) and fluoride (F-) ions to develop a new composition of bioceramic, Ca10-xZnx(PO4)(6-y)(SO4)(y)(OH)(2-z-y)F-z(SO4)(y), (x = 0, 0.2, 0.6, 1.0, y = 0, 0.5 and z = 0,1.0 mol), using wet precipitation method. The obtained materials were analysed using XRD, FTIR, FESEM, and XPS techniques to investigate the phase purity, particle morphology and elemental composition, respectively. A model anticancer drug (Doxorubicin, DOX) was loaded onto the surface of the Zn/SO4-FHA materials. About 100% loading of DOX with a controlled release profile was obtained. Degradation of materials in Simulated body fluid (SBF) was greatly improved with the incorporation of Zn2+/SO42- ions in comparison to HA/FHA, which makes it highly bioactive materials. In vitro cell viability and adhesion of Human fetal osteoblast (hFOB) cell were investigated. Cell viability has demonstrated that the hFOB cells proliferated at a high rate on Zn/SO4-FHA materials, confirming the in vitro biocompatibility of the materials. Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and intracellular calcium deposition of hFOB cells seeded on 1ZnSO(4)-FHA disc surface was statistically higher than observed on pure HA and FHA discs, indicating that hFOB cells differentiated into mature osteoblasts on 1Zn/SO4-FHA disc surfaces. Taken together, our results suggest that HA substituted by (Zn2+, 0.2 mol), (SO42-, 0.5 mol) and (F-, 1 mol) (1Zn/So(4)-FHA) material was a promising material for hard tissue scaffolds.