Kasia's New Paper on Neural Interface Biomaterials Published in Scientific Reports
By providing a bidirectional communication channel between neural tissues and a biomedical device, it is envisaged that neural interfaces will be fundamental in the future diagnosis and treatment of neurological disorders. Due to the mechanical mismatch between neural tissue and metallic neural electrodes, soft electrically conducting materials are of great benefit in promoting chronic device functionality. In this study, carbon nanotubes (CNT), silver nanowires (AgNW) and poly(hydroxymethyl 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) microspheres (MSP) were employed as conducting fillers within a poly(ε-decalactone) (EDL) matrix, to form a soft and electrically conducting composite. The effect of a filler type on the electrical percolation threshold, and composite biocompatibility was investigated in vitro. All investigated composite surfaces were found to be biocompatible, and to reduce the presence of reactive astrocytes relative to control electrodes. The results of this work clearly demonstrated the ability of high aspect ratio structures to form an extended percolation network within a polyester matrix, resulting in the formulation of composites with advantageous mechanical, electrochemical and biocompatibility properties.