Adhesion, cytoskeletal architecture and activation status of primary human macrophages on a diamond-like carbon coated surface

Biomaterials. 2002 Feb;23(3):767-73. doi: 10.1016/s0142-9612(01)00182-x.


Diamond-like carbon is a promising surface coating for biomedicinal implants like coronary stents or hip joints. Before widespread clinical use of this material, its biocompatibility has to be thoroughly assessed. Cells likely to encounter a diamond-like coated implant in the human body are cells of the monocytic lineage. Their interaction with the diamond-like carbon coated surface will probably critically influence the fate of the implant, as monocytes orchestrate inflammatory reactions and also affect osseointegration of implants. We therefore investigated adhesion, cytoarchitecture and activation status of primary human monocytes and their differentiated derivatives, macrophages, on diamond-like coated glass coverslips using immunofluorescence technique. We show that adhesion of primary monocytes to a diamond-like-coated coverslip is slightly, but not significantly, enhanced in comparison to uncoated coverslips, while the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons of mature macrophages show a normal development. The activation status of macrophages, as judged by polarization of the cell body, was not affected by growth on a diamond-like carbon surface. We conclude that diamond-like carbon shows good indications for biocompatibility to blood monocytes in vitro. It is therefore unlikely that contact with a diamond-like carbon coated surface in the human body will elicit inflammatory signals by these cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biocompatible Materials / pharmacology
  • Cell Size
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Coated Materials, Biocompatible / chemistry
  • Coated Materials, Biocompatible / pharmacology*
  • Cytoskeleton / ultrastructure*
  • Diamond / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Macrophage Activation / physiology*
  • Macrophages / drug effects
  • Macrophages / physiology*
  • Macrophages / ultrastructure
  • Monocytes / cytology
  • Monocytes / physiology*


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Coated Materials, Biocompatible
  • Diamond