Accelerated Neutral Atom Beam processing of medical devices enhances tissue integration while reducing bacterial attachment

J. Khoury, B. Phok, S. Kirkpatrick, M. Walsh, D. Shashkov
Exogenesis Corp,
United States

Keywords: ANAB, biocompatibility, integration, nano-topography


Accelerated Neutral Atom Beam (ANAB) technology is a low energy accelerated particle beam gaining acceptance as a tool for nano-scale surface modification of implantable medical devices. ANAB is created by acceleration of neutral argon (Ar) atoms with very low energies under vacuum which bombard a material surface, modifying it to a very shallow depth of 2-3 nm. This is a non-additive technology that results in modifications of surface topography, wettability, and surface chemistry. These modifications are understood to be important in cell-surface interactions on implantable medical devices. Controlling surface properties of biomaterials is vital in improving the biocompatibility of devices by enhancing integration and reducing bacterial attachment. In this study, we characterize the effects of ANAB treatment on several biomaterial surfaces aiming to enhance implantable medical devices. Materials, including polymers such as PEEK, polypropylene, PTFE, and metals such as titanium, CoCr, and stainless steel were either left as control or treated with Ar-based ANAB at doses from 1.25e16 to 1.0e17 atoms/cm2. AFM analysis of materials after ANAB treatment reveals a nano-textured surface of approximately 20-50 nm from peak to peak with depths of approximately 5-20 nm, controlled depending on applied dose. Contact angle studies on PEEK reveal a more wettable surface following ANAB treatment decreasing water contact angle from 92.35±8.51 degrees to 72.95±4.51 degrees (n=5; p