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Responsive Biosensors for Biodegradable Magnesium Implants

[+] Author Affiliations
Mark J. Schulz, Amos Doepke, Xuefei Guo, Julia Kuhlmann, Brian Halsall, William Heineman, Zhongyun Dong, Zongqin Tan, Dingchuan Xue, Namheon Lee, Yeoheung Yun, Yijun Liu, Douglas Hurd, Vesselin Shanov, Durgesh Rai, Sarah K. Pixley, Tracy Hopkins, Chaminda Jayasinghe, Surya Sundaramurthy

University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH

Frank Witte

Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany

Dhananjay Kumar, Sergey Yarmolenko

North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC

Paper No. IMECE2009-13101, pp. 109-116; 8 pages
  • ASME 2009 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 14: Processing and Engineering Applications of Novel Materials
  • Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA, November 13–19, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4387-1 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3863-1
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


A biosensor is an electronic device that measures biologically important parameters. An example is a sensor that measures the chemicals and materials released during corrosion of a biodegradable magnesium implant that impact surrounding cells, tissues and organs. A responsive biosensor is a biosensor that responds to its own measurements. An example is a sensor that measures the corrosion of an implant and automatically adjusts (slows down or speeds up) the corrosion rate. The University of Cincinnati, the University of Pittsburgh, North Carolina A&T State University, and the Hannover Medical Institute are collaborators in an NSF Engineering Research Center (ERC) for Revolutionizing Metallic Biomaterials (RBM). The center will use responsive sensors in experimental test beds to develop biodegradable magnesium implants. Our goal is to develop biodegradable implants that combine novel bioengineered materials based on magnesium alloys, miniature sensor devices that monitor and control the corrosion, and coatings that slow corrosion and release biological factors and drugs that will promote healing in surrounding tissues. Responsive biosensors will monitor what is happening at the interface between the implant and tissue to ensure that the implant is effective, biosafe, and provides appropriate strength while degrading. Corrosion behavior is a critical factor in the design of the implant. The corrosion behavior of implants will be studied using biosensors and through mathematical modeling. Design guidelines will be developed to predict the degradation rate of implants, and to predict and further study toxicity arising from corrosion products (i.e., Mg ion concentrations, pH levels, and hydrogen gas evolution). Knowing the corrosion rate will allow estimations to be made of implant strength and toxicity risk throughout the degradation process.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME



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