Thermoplastic Net-Shaping of Low-Density and Biocompatible Ti-based Metallic Glasses for Dental Implants


Project Leader: Baran Sarac

Co-Proposers: Jürgen Eckert, Florian Spieckermann

BACKGROUND

The ultimate target of this project is to develop a biocompatible Ti-based metallic glass (MG) implant with modulated topography which potentially promotes the cellular response from initial attachment and migration to differentiation and production of new tissue without the need of exogenous growth factors. In order to achieve this goal four main scientific milestones are targeted: (i) Developing a novel Ti-based biocompatible MG with enhanced (micro)patterning kinetics. (ii) Defining appropriate routes to achieve material properties which function as an excellent stress-shielding material in daily use. (iii) Production and tuning of surface patterns with improved antimicrobial/osseointegrative properties. (iv) Investigation and understanding the mechanisms of cell adhesion, bactericidal adhesion and biocorrosion.

The Achilles’ heel of Ti-based MGs is the marginal drop in viscosities and relatively high strength within their supercooled liquid region. Hence, in addition to all the important parameters to increase the casting diameter and to provide adequate resilience, in WP1 we propose to develop a novel Ti-based MG while also focusing on increasing the specific strength. The newly developed Ti-MG will be studied via in- and ex-situ mechanical, and thermal, (bio)chemical and structural tests (WP2). In WP3, the cast MG will be subsequently thermoplastically shaped into customarily designed molds, while cross-disciplinary study with WP1 and WP2 will be carried out to optimize the viscous flow characteristics.  Cytotoxicity and biocorrosion tests, wettability analysis, cell attachment and differentiation for the as-cast MGs and thermoplastically formed MG implants will be performed in WP4.