To overcome the obstacles of easy dissolution of PVA nanofibers without crosslinking treatment and the poor electrospinnability of the PVA cross-linked nanofibers via electrospinning process, the PVA based electrospun hydrogel nanofibers are prepared with post-crosslinking method. To expect the electrospun hydrogel fibers might be a promising scaffold for cell culture and tissue engineering applications, the evaluation of cell proliferation on the post-crosslinking electrospun fibers is conducted in this study. At beginning, poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA), PVA/sodium alginate (PVASA) and PVA/poly(γ-glutamic acid) (PVAPGA) electrospun fibers were prepared by electrospinning method. The electrospun PVA, PVASA and PVAPGA nanofibers were treated with post-cross-linking method with glutaraldehyde (Glu) as crosslinking agent. These electrospun fibers were characterized with thermogravimetry analysis (TGA) and their morphologies were observed with a scanning electron microscope (SEM). To support the evaluation and explanation of cell growth on the fiber, the study of 3T3 mouse fibroblast cell growth on the surface of pure PVA, SA, and PGA thin films is conducted. The proliferation of 3T3 on the electrospun fiber surface of PVA, PVASA, and PVAPGA was evaluated by seeding 3T3 fibroblast cells on these crosslinked electrospun fibers. The cell viability on electrospun fibers was conducted with water-soluble tetrazolium salt-1 assay (Cell Proliferation Reagent WST-1). The morphology of the cells on the fibers was also observed with SEM. The results of WST-1 assay revealed that 3T3 cells cultured on different electrospun fibers had similar viability, and the cell viability increased with time for all electrospun fibers. From the morphology of the cells on electrospun fibers, it is found that 3T3 cells attached on all electrospun fiber after 1 day seeded. Cell-cell communication was noticed on day 3 for all electrospun fibers. Extracellular matrix (ECM) productions were found and cell-ECM adhesion was shown on day 7. The cell number was also increased on all of the crosslinked electrospun fibers. It seems that the PVA based electrospun hydrogel nanofibers prepared with post-crosslinking method can be used as scaffold for tissue engineering.
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