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GAKTpore: Stereological Characterisation Methods for Porous Foams in Biomedical Applications

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posted on 2021-03-15, 10:43 authored by Gareth Sheppard, Karl Tassenberg, Bogdan Nenchev, Joel Strickland, Ramy Mesalam, Jennifer Shepherd, Hugo Williams
In tissue engineering, scaffolds are a key component that possess a highly elaborate pore structure. Careful characterisation of such porous structures enables the prediction of a variety of large-scale biological responses. In this work, a rapid, efficient, and accurate methodology for 2D bulk porous structure analysis is proposed. The algorithm, “GAKTpore”, creates a morphology map allowing quantification and visualisation of spatial feature variation. The software achieves 99.6% and 99.1% mean accuracy for pore diameter and shape factor identification, respectively. There are two main algorithm novelties within this work: (1) feature-dependant homogeneity map; (2) a new waviness function providing insights into the convexity/concavity of pores, important for understanding the influence on cell adhesion and proliferation. The algorithm is applied to foam structures, providing a full characterisation of a 10 mm diameter SEM micrograph (14,784 × 14,915 px) with 190,249 pores in ~9 min and has elucidated new insights into collagen scaffold formation by relating microstructural formation to the bulk formation environment. This novel porosity characterisation algorithm demonstrates its versatility, where accuracy, repeatability, and time are paramount. Thus, GAKTpore offers enormous potential to optimise and enhance scaffolds within tissue engineering.

History

Citation

Materials 2021, 14(5), 1269; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma14051269

Author affiliation

School of Physics and Astronomy

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Materials

Volume

14

Issue

5

Pagination

1269 - 1269

Publisher

MDPI AG

eissn

1996-1944

Acceptance date

2021-03-04

Copyright date

2021

Available date

2021-03-07

Language

en

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