Micro- and Nanopatterning of Freestanding Protein Films
Biodegradable casein films have significant potential for use as non-supported stand-alone sheeting in orthopaedic implants and tissue engineering substrates. Multi-scale surface patterns can be used to modulate and guide cell interaction by means of an engineered construct. The majority of work on cell-pattern interaction has so far focused on non-degradable materials. In this paper we demonstrate for the first time the fabrication of micro- and nano-scale geometric patterns on the surface of a crosslinked biodegradable casein film. To achieve this we introduce a two-step fabrication procedure based on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) soft-lithography. We will show the reproduction of micro- and nano-scale patterns in liquid-cast casein films. We also demonstrate film formation and cross-linking using glutaraldehyde and discuss the use of these films as cell-culture substrates.