The regenerative medicine has been improving the cure expectation of several human diseases. In this sense, many studies have been focused in the development of biomaterial with similar properties of human living tissues. Among them, the injectable hydrogels can be applied in minimally invasive surgeries for potential regeneration and repair of spinal cord injuries. Poly(N-vinylcaprolactam) (PNVCL) has attracted the attention mainly because it is thermo-sensitive, non-toxic and biocompatible. When combined with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), PNVCL can form a biocompatible hydrogels. In this sense, a promising alternative is the development of nanocomposites, which can associate the properties of hydrogels with the mechanical strength of bioactive ceramics, such as mesoporous silica nanofibers, and the radiopacity of ytterbium trifluoride nanoparticles (YbF3). With the addition of these fillers, it will be possible to improve the mechanical properties and monitor the implant in vivo. In this project, nanocomposites of PVPCL-PVA hydrogels and SiO2 nanofibers covered by YbF3 nanoparticles will be prepared by the simple mixture and by the in situ polymerization. The aim of this study is to obtain biocompatible materials applicable as scaffold for tissue engineering. Morphologies, structures, thermo-mechanical properties and the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of the biomaterials will be evaluated by scanning and transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, small angle X-ray scattering, dynamic light scattering, infrared spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, UV-Vis spectrophotometry, differential scanning calorimetry, thermogravimetry and dynamic mechanical analysis. Finally, the bioactivity of nanocomposites will be performed by the growth and the adhesion of cells.
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