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Applied Surface Science

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The main objective of this study is to hydrophobize nitinol (Ni-Ti alloy) for cardiovascular applications. For this purpose, medical nitinol samples were subjected to sodium hydroxide hydrothermal treatments at various temperatures, followed by hexadecyltrimethoxysilane (HDTMS) functionalization. Then, the structure, wettability, corrosion, cytocompatibility and cell adhesion of the prepared samples were evaluated. According to the results, porous blade-shaped layers of sodium titanate were formed on the substrate surface as a result of the alkaline treatment. These nano-rough features offered considerable hydrophobicity after HDTMS processing, where a maximum water contact angle of about 140° was obtained for the sample treated at 120 °C, followed by the HDTMS coating. In contrast to the individual application of the alkaline treatments, the subsequent HDTMS processing improved corrosion resistance in the simulated body fluid. Although all the samples presented appropriate cytocompatibility with respect to human umbilical vein endothelial cells, the cells did not show an adhesion tendency to the hydrophobic surfaces. It is concluded that alkaline hydrothermal and HDTMS processed nitinol can be considered for cardiovascular applications demanding hydrophobic surfaces.


Accepted version. Applied Surface Science, Vol. 506 (March 15, 2020): 144657. DOI. © 2020 Elsevier. Used with permission.

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