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Mixture designs to assess composition‑structure‑property relationships in SiO2‑CaO‑ZnO‑La2O3‑TiO2‑MgO‑SrO‑Na2O glasses: potential materials for embolization
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Embolization with micron-sized particulates is widely applied to treat uterine fibroids. The objective of this work was to develop mixture designs to predict materials composition-structure-property relationships for the SiO₂-CaO-ZnO-La₂O₃-TiO₂-MgO-SrO-Na₂O glass system and compare its fundamental materials properties (density and cytocompatibility), against a state-of-the-art embolic agent (contour polyvinyl alcohol) to assess the potential of these materials for embolization therapies. The glass structures were evaluated using ²⁹Si MAS NMR to identify chemical shift and line width; the particulate densities were determined using helium pycnometry and the cell viabilities were assessed via MTT assay. ²⁹Si MAS NMR results indicated peak maxima for each glass in the range of -82.3 ppm to -89.9 ppm; associated with Q² to Q³ units in silicate glasses. All experimental embolic compositions showed enhanced in vitro compatibility in comparison to Contour PVA with the exceptions of ORP9 and ORP11 (containing no TiO₂). In this study, optimal compositions for cell viability were obtained for the following compositional ranges: 0.095-0.188 mole fraction ZnO; 0.068-0.159 mole fraction La₂O₃; 0.545-0.562 mole fraction SiO₂ and 0.042-0.050 mole fraction TiO₂. To ensure ease of producibility in obtaining good melts, a maximum loading of 0.068 mole fraction La₂O₃ is required. This is confirmed by the desirability approach, for which the only experimental composition (ORP5) of the materials evaluated was presented as an optimum composition; combining high cell viability with ease of production (0.188 mole fraction ZnO; 0.068 mole fraction La₂O₃; 0.562 mole fraction SiO₂ and 0.042 mole fraction TiO₂).
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