Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Dissertation


Chemistry and Biochemistry



First Advisor

Qian Wang


Bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) have the potential to differentiate into osteoblasts, chondrocytes, adipocytes and smooth muscles. Although, they have shown great prospects in therapeutic and medical applications, less is known about the role that the nano environment plays on their differentiation potential. This dissertation focuses on studying the effect of nanotopography on the promotion of osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs. The nanoptopographies were created by coating 2D substrates with turnip yellow mosaic virus (TYMV) and tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) bionanoparticles. TYMV and TMV, both are nanosized plant viruses with spherical and rod shaped morphology, respectively. The temporal change in expression of osteogenic specific genes during the differentiation of BMSCs on nanoparticle coated wafers was monitored over time course of 21 days. Differentiating BMSCs on virus coated substrates formed fully mineralized nodules and structures comprising of osteoblast-like cells around 14 days. Experimental evidence generated by real time quantitative (qPCR) analyses, DNA microarrays and the expression of osteogenic markers using immunohistochemistry/cytochemical staining further corroborated that nanotopography promoted the osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs. Our studies strongly indicate that such viruses as biogenic nanoparticles can modulate the nanoenvironment of the substrate to influence differentiation potential of cells. These viruses display a variety of accessible amino acid functionalities on their outer protein capsid which can be tailored to obtain a polyvalent ligand display for different applications. Therefore, tailoring these particles with ligands affecting the cell growth and differentiation was also monitored. Such systems demonstrate great potential as models to gain new insights into the role micro / nano environment plays in regulating growth and differentiation of BMSCs.