A study on the development of collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds with ultrasonic treatment for promoting cartilage regeneration

A Study on the Development of Collagen/Silk Fibroin Composite Scaffolds with Ultrasonic Treatment for Promoting Cartilage Regeneration


Cartilage damage and degeneration are common problems that can lead to significant pain and loss of function in individuals. Traditional treatment options, such as medication and physical therapy, often provide temporary relief but fail to address the underlying issue of cartilage regeneration. Therefore, researchers have been exploring innovative approaches to promote cartilage regeneration, including the use of tissue engineering techniques. In this study, the focus is on the development of collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds with ultrasonic treatment as a potential solution for promoting cartilage regeneration.

Collagen/Silk Fibroin Composite Scaffolds:

Collagen and silk fibroin are two widely used biomaterials in tissue engineering due to their biocompatibility, biodegradability, and mechanical properties. Collagen provides structural support and mimics the extracellular matrix (ECM) of cartilage, while silk fibroin offers excellent mechanical strength. By combining these two materials, a composite scaffold can be created that possesses the desired properties for cartilage regeneration.

Ultrasonic Treatment:

Ultrasonic treatment involves the application of high-frequency sound waves to a material. In the context of tissue engineering, ultrasonic treatment has been shown to enhance the properties of scaffolds by improving their porosity, surface roughness, and cell adhesion. Additionally, ultrasonic treatment can promote the release of growth factors from the scaffold, which further aids in cartilage regeneration.


In this study, collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds were fabricated using a freeze-drying technique. The scaffolds were then subjected to ultrasonic treatment at varying frequencies and durations. The effects of ultrasonic treatment on scaffold properties were evaluated through various characterization techniques, including scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and mechanical testing.


The results of this study demonstrated that ultrasonic treatment significantly improved the porosity and surface roughness of the collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds. SEM images revealed a more interconnected and porous structure, which is crucial for cell infiltration and nutrient exchange. FTIR analysis confirmed the preservation of collagen and silk fibroin components after ultrasonic treatment. Furthermore, mechanical testing showed enhanced mechanical properties, including increased tensile strength and elastic modulus, indicating improved scaffold stability.

Cartilage Regeneration Potential:

To assess the cartilage regeneration potential of the collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds with ultrasonic treatment, in vitro experiments were conducted using chondrocyte cells. Cell viability, proliferation, and differentiation were evaluated to determine the scaffold’s ability to support cartilage tissue formation. The results demonstrated that the ultrasonically treated scaffolds promoted cell attachment, proliferation, and chondrogenic differentiation, indicating their potential for cartilage regeneration.


This study highlights the development of collagen/silk fibroin composite scaffolds with ultrasonic treatment as a promising approach for promoting cartilage regeneration. The ultrasonic treatment improved scaffold properties, including porosity, surface roughness, and mechanical strength. Furthermore, the scaffolds supported chondrocyte cell attachment, proliferation, and differentiation, indicating their potential for cartilage tissue formation. Further research and in vivo studies are warranted to validate these findings and explore the clinical applications of these composite scaffolds in cartilage regeneration therapies.