In this study, carbon nanotube (CNT) reinforced functionally graded bioactive glass scaffolds have been fabricated using additive manufacturing technique. Sol-gel method was used for the synthesis of the bioactive glass. For ink preparation, Pluronic F-127 was used as an ink carrier. The CNT-reinforced scaffolds were coated with the polymer polycaprolactone (PCL) using dip-coating method to improve their properties further by sealing the micro cracks. The CNT-reinforcement and polymer coating resulted in an improvement in the compressive strength of the additively manufactured scaffolds by 98% in comparison to pure bioactive glass scaffolds. Further, the morphological analysis revealed interconnected pores and their size appropriate for osteogenesis and angiogenesis. Evaluation of the in vitro bioactivity of the scaffolds after immersion in simulated body fluid (SBF) confirmed the formation of hydroxyapatite (HA). Further, the cellular studies showed good cell viability and initiation of osteogensis. These results demonstrate the potential of these scaffolds for bone tissue engineering applications.
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