The thrombogenicity of a biomaterial is mainly dependent on its surface characteristics, which dictates its interactions with blood. Surface properties such as composition, roughness wettability, surface free energy, and morphology will affect an implant material's hemocompatibility. Additionally, in the realm of metallic biomaterials, the specific composition of the alloy and its surface treatment are important factors that will affect the surface properties. The utility of magneto-electropolished (MEP) ternary Nitinol alloys, NiTiTa, and NiTiCr as blood contacting materials was investigated. The hemcompatibility of these alloys were compared to mechanically polished (MP) metallic biomaterial counterparts. In vitro thrombogenicity tests revealed significantly less platelet adherence on ternary MEP Nitinol, especially MEP NiTi10Ta as compared to the MP metals (p < 0.05). The enhanced anti-platelet-adhesive property of MEP NiTi10Ta was in part, attributed to the Ta2 O5 component of the alloy. Furthermore, the formation of a dense and mixed hydrophobic oxide layer during MEP is believed to have inhibited the adhesion of negatively charged platelets. In conclusion, MEP ternary Nitinol alloys can potentially be utilized for blood-contacting devices where, complications resulting from thrombogenicity can be minimized.
Keywords: blood-material interaction; blood-material interface; hemocompatibility; metal (alloys); platelet.
© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.