Ectopic bone formation in rats: the importance of the carrier
Much research has been done to develop the ideal bone graft substitute (BGS). One approach to develop this ideal BGS is the use of growth factors, but for this approach osteoprogenitor cells are needed at the site of reconstruction. An alternative is a cell-based approach, where enough cells are provided to form bone in a carrier material. In previous studies of our group, titanium (Ti) carriers have been used, because of the excellent mechanical properties and the bone-compatibility of this material. On the other hand, calcium phosphate (CaP) ceramics are known for their excellent osteoconductivity. The aim of this study is to investigate the influence of the carrier in a cell-based bone regeneration approach, whereby we hypothesize that CaP-ceramic implants will induce more bone formation than Ti-fiber implants, in the same animal model as our previous experiment. Ti-fiber mesh implants and ceramic implants were seeded with rat bone marrow cells (RBM) and implanted subcutaneously. Histological analysis after one, three and six weeks showed differences in the way of bone formation in the two groups: bone appeared to grow from the center to the periphery of the implant in the titanium group, while bone formation in the ceramic group occurred through the whole implant. Histomorphometrical analysis after one week showed very limited bone formation for both the titanium and ceramic group. At three weeks, the amount of bone formation was increased till about 10% for the titanium group and 18% for the ceramic group. No significant difference between the two groups could be observed. In the six week group, the bone formation was 6% (Ti) and 23% (CaP), respectively (P<0.0001). Further, bone formation started earlier in the CaP-ceramic scaffolds than in the Ti scaffolds. Our hypothesis could be confirmed: ceramic implants induce more bone formation than titanium implants.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 26, Issue 14, May 2005, Pages 1829–1835