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Osteoconductive carriers for integrated bone repair

Timothy Ganey, PhD,1 William Hutton, DSc,2 Hans Jörg Meisel, MD, PhD3

1Department of Orthopaedics, Atlanta Medical Center, Atlanta, GA 2Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center, Atlanta Medical Center, Atlanta, GA 3Department of Neurosurgery, BG-Clinic Bergmannstrost, Halle, Germany

Abstract 

Successful bone repair is judged in achieving restitution of space and mechanical integrity, and in regaining function. When the biology or anatomy are insufficient to attain a full repair, therapeutic use of graft material has been used to omit compliance features such as strain tolerance, reduced stiffness, and attenuated strength, and instead promote primary or membranous-type bone formation within the physical approximation of a graft material. The challenge of most conductive materials is that they emerge from a static platform and in placement force the living system to adapt to placement, dimension, different properties, and eventually are only successful in degradation and replacement, or in integration. The synergy and interdependency between adhesion, ECM, and proteolysis are important concepts that must be understood to engineer scaffolds capable of holding up to standards which are more than cell decoration. Moreover, the reactive specificity to loading, degradation, therapeutic delivery during absorption remains a key aim of both academic and industrial designs. Achieving conductivity comes with challenges of best fit integration, delivery, and in integrated modeling. The more liquid is the delivery, the more modular the components, and adaptive the matrix to meeting the intended application, the more likely that the conductivity will not be excluded by the morphology of the injury site. Considerations for osteoconductive materials for bone repair and replacement have developed conceptually and advanced parallel with a better understanding of not only bone biology but of materials science. First models of material replacements utilized a reductionist-constructionist logic; define the constituents of the material in terms of its morphology and chemical composition, and then engineer material with similar content and properties as a means of accommodating a replacement. Unfortunately for biologic systems, empiric formulation is insufficient to promote adequate integration in a timely fashion. Future matrices will need to translate their biological surfaces as more than a scaffold to be decorated with cells. Conductivity will be improved by formulations that enhance function, further extended from understanding what composition best suits cell attachment, and be adopted by conveniences of delivery that meet those criteria.

keywords: 
Bone repair, Grafting material, Geometric fidelity, Regenerative capacity, Bio-instructive
Volume 3 Issue 3
doi: 
10.1016/j.esas.2009.09.006