Rat bone marrow stromal cell differentiation on aluminosilicate 3Al(2)O(3)-2SiO(2) coatings was investigated. Thin ceramic coatings were prepared on alpha-alumina substrates by the sol-gel process and calcined in order to establish an amorphous aluminosilicate ceramic phase with and without nanosized transitional mullite crystals. In addition, coatings of thermally sprayed aluminosilicate and diphasic gamma-alumina-silica nanosized colloids were prepared. Cell culture testing by rat osteoblasts showed good biocompatibility for aluminosilicates with sustained normal osteoblast functions. Despite mutual disparities in physical and chemical nanostructures, the culture findings suggested fairly similar osteoblast response to all tested coatings. The results suggest that topographical frequency parameters and chemical uniformity are important parameters in determining the best conditions for osteoblasts on sol-gel derived aluminosilicate materials.