2020 Volume 28 Pages 119-125
Silk-fibroin sponges have been studied for use as effective biomedical materials, specifically as scaffolds for cartilage tissue regeneration and wound covering. Water absorption properties of fibroin sponge are important for developing new biomedical and cosmetic applications. Hydrophilic polymer (PEG) composites and pore size control by altering fabrication processes can control water absorption properties. To evaluate water absorption properties, we introduced a parameter based on water contact angle measurements. This parameter, which represents the water sorption velocity, can indicate different water absorption properties of small areas in one sponge material. Several fibroin sponges with different pore sizes were prepared by changing fabrication processes. Higher water absorption velocity was observed on fibroin sponges with larger pores. Furthermore, PEG composite fibroin sponges were fabricated with incorporation of PEG caused by increasing the water absorption velocity. These results indicate that fabrication processes can control fibroin sponge water absorption properties.