Abstract—A leading consequence of burns is the loss of large extensions of skin. Thus, skin tissue engineering has been increased and promoted development of biomimetic skin scaffolds. Type I collagen is one of the most materials used in tissue engineering due to its biological characteristics. However, the applications of collagen as biomaterial are severely limited by its reduced physicochemical and mechanical properties, such as high susceptibility to enzymatic degradation in vivo and low thermo stability. To enhance collagen properties, crosslinked collagen scaffolds at different concentrations of 1-ethyl-3-(3-dimethylaminopropyl) carbodiimide hydrochloride (EDC) were prepared by freeze-drying technique. The effect of crosslinking and concentration on scaffolds physicochemical and biological behavior was evaluated. Scaffolds morphology was observed by Scanning Electron Microscopy, showing in all cases an appropriate microstructure for biological applications. Differential Scanning Calorimetric showed an increase in shrinkage temperature (TS) with increase in EDC concentration. Infrared Spectroscopy suggested that the secondary structure of collagen is not affected after the crosslinking. Enzymatic degradation test indicated that scaffolds treated with EDC dissolved slowly in enzymatic solution (just 12% of degradation after 96 h). Cell viability and attachment tests suggested that EDC treatment do not affect the excellent biological characteristics of collagen.
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