Barium titanate (BT) and barium strontium titanate (BST) are one of the most studied ferroelectric materials with excellent piezoelectric properties, which can be used to stimulate bone formation by applying an electrical field. It is known that this ceramic is biocompatible and can be used for medical applications. New hybrid materials based on BT and collagen and BST and collagen, with potential applications in bone reconstruction, are presented, emphasizing the potential of fabricating 3D structures by integrating hydrothermal synthesis with additive manufacturing. Designing such structures may take advantage of rheological characterization at single-molecule level for some elastic biopolymers like titin and collagen and their molecular dissection into structural motifs that independently contribute to the protein viscoelasticity. Atomic force spectroscopy measurements on synthetic polypeptides showed that a polypeptide chain containing Ig domain modules is protected against rupture at high stretch by Ig domain unfolding, an important mechanism for stress relaxation in titin molecules. This property may be exploited to enhance the tensile strength of a 3D structure by adding specific synthetic polypeptides to the composition of the printing paste.
Part of the book: Biomaterials