Modified Portland cement porous scaffolds with suitable characteristics for load‐bearing bone tissue engineering applications were manufactured by combining the particulate leaching and foaming methods. Non‐crosslinked polydimethylsiloxane was evaluated as a potential reinforcing material. The scaffolds presented average porosities between 70 and 80% with mean pore sizes ranging from 300 μm up to 5.0 mm. Non‐reinforced scaffolds presented compressive strengths and elastic modulus values of 2.6 and 245 MPa, respectively, whereas reinforced scaffolds exhibited 4.2 and 443 MPa, respectively, an increase of ∼62 and 80%. Portland cement scaffolds supported human osteoblast‐like cell adhesion, spreading, and propagation (t = 1–28 days). Cell metabolism and alkaline phosphatase activity were found to be enhanced at longer culture intervals (t ≥ 14 days). These results suggest the possibility of obtaining strong and biocompatible scaffolds for bone repair applications from inexpensive, yet technologically advanced materials such as Portland cement. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater 100B: 501–507, 2012.
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