Biocompatibility of Biomaterials

Academic year
Subject Area
Language of Instruction
Other Languages of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
2nd Cycle Studies - Mestrado

Recommended Prerequisites

Backgroung knowledge acquired in course units in Biochemistry, Biology, Physiology, Microbiology, Chemistry and Statistics. Knowledge of written and spoken English.

Teaching Methods

The curricular unit runs for 4 weeks, full time. In the theoretical part, the necessary concepts are presented with the aid of multimedia assistants and an interactive discussion of difficulties identified by the students. In the laboratory part, an evaluation of an aspect of biocompatibility is carried out and, in the theoretical-practical part, the laboratory work is planned and the results obtained are presented and analyzed. Additionally, a recent study from literature or a work based on a bibliographic search will be presented by the students.

Learning Outcomes

It is intended that the student acquires knowledge concerning the use in humans of artificial and natural materials and biomedical devices made with them, as well as the evaluation of their compatibility with the biological environment. For this purpose, concepts will be transmitted about (i) materials used as biomaterials, (ii) effects of the biological environment on biomaterials, (iii) biological reactions to biomaterials, (iv) evaluation of the biocompatibility of biomaterials, and (v) improvement of the biocompatibility of biomaterials. Laboratory skills will also be developed regarding the planning and execution of the evaluation of an aspect of the biocompatibility of materials, the analysis, discussion and communication of the results obtained and the search for scientific information, as well as its critical analysis and presentation.

Work Placement(s)



1. Introduction to biomaterials and to their biocompatibility.

2. Principal materials employed as biomaterials.

3. Effect of the biological environment on biomaterials (biodegradation).

4. Effect of biomaterials on the biological environment (biocompatibility).

5. Evaluation of the biocompatibility of biomaterials and medical devices.

6. Improvement of the biocompatibility of biomaterials.

Head Lecturer(s)

António Jorge Rebelo Ferreira Guiomar

Assessment Methods

Presentation and discussion of a published study or of a work based on a bibliographic search: 20.0%
Laboratory work or Field work: 30.0%
Exam: 50.0%


1. M. Mozafari (Ed.), Handbook of Biomaterials Biocompatibility, Woodhead Publishing, Cambridge, UK (2020)

2. B. D. Ratner, F. J. Schoen, A. S. Hoffman, J. E. Lemons (Eds.), Biomaterials Science: An Introduction to Materials in Medicine, 3rd ed., Academic Press, Inc., San Diego (2014)

3. D. F. Williams, On the Nature of Biomaterials, Biomaterials, 30, 5897-5909 (2009)

4. D. F. Williams, On the Mechanisms of Biocompatibility, Biomaterials, 29, 2941-2953 (2009).