Designing surfaces to deliver therapeutic compounds to adhering cells is of paramount importance for both implantable devices and tissue engineering. We report the assembly of composite films consisting of liposomes as drug deposits in a poly(dopamine) matrix. We monitor the film assembly using a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation. We assess the response of adhering myoblast cells to these films containing fluorescent lipids in terms of uptake efficiency and cell mean fluorescence using flow cytometry. The viability of adhering myoblast cells, when the hydrophobic cytotoxic compound thiocoraline is entrapped in the lipid membrane, is assessed for different films. Coatings with one or two liposome deposition steps are considered. Further, the effect of the polymer separation layers between the liposome layers is determined. We found that it is possible to use the different nano-engineered composite coatings to impose a corresponding cellular response, e.g., a higher amount of embedded liposomes leads to higher uptake efficiency of the fluorescent lipids and cell mean fluorescence or a higher reduction in the viability of the adhering cells. Assessment of the uptake efficiency and cell mean fluorescence over time reveals a decrease in both parameters over 48 h. Our results demonstrate the ability to affect the cell response depending on the properties of the films, opening up a variety of opportunities for biomedical applications in substrate-mediated drug delivery.
Journal of Biomaterials Science. Polymer Edition, 2013, Vol 1, Issue 11, p. 1181-1192