Measuring Changes in Electrical Impedance During Cell-Mediated Mineralization

Rafael Ramos, Kairui Zhang, David Quinn, Stephen W. Sawyer, Shannon Mcloughlin, Pranav Soman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: The fundamental electrical properties of bone have been attributed to the organic collagen and the inorganic mineral component; however, contributions of individual components within bone tissue toward the measured electrical properties are not known. In our study, we investigated the electrical properties of cell-mediated mineral deposition process and compared our results with cell-free mineralization. Materials and Methods: Saos-2 cells encapsulated within gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) hydrogels were chemically stimulated in osteogenic medium for a period of 4 weeks. The morphology, composition, and mechanical properties of the mineralized constructs were characterized using bright-field imaging, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FITR), nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), micro-CT, immunostaining, and mechanical compression tests. In parallel, a custom-made device was used to measure the electrical impedance of mineralized constructs. All results were compared with cell-free GelMA hydrogels mineralized through the simulated body fluid approach. Results: Results demonstrate a decrease in the electrical impedance of deposited mineral in both cell-mineralized and cell-free mineralized samples. Conclusions: This study establishes a model system to investigate in vivo and in vitro mineralization processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-84
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2019


  • electrical impedance
  • gelatin methacrylate
  • hydrogels
  • mineral deposition
  • simulated body fluid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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