Custom-made composite scaffolds for segmental defect repair in long bones
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Current approaches for segmental bone defect reconstruction are restricted to autografts and allografts which possess osteoconductive, osteoinductive and osteogenic properties, but face significant disadvantages. The objective of this study was to compare the regenerative potential of scaffolds with different material composition but similar mechanical properties to autologous bone graft from the iliac crest in an ovine segmental defect model. After 12 weeks, in vivo specimens were analysed by X-ray imaging, torsion testing, micro-computed tomography and histology to assess amount, strength and structure of the newly formed bone. The highest amounts of bone neoformation with highest torsional moment values were observed in the autograft group and the lowest in the medical grade polycaprolactone and tricalcium phosphate composite group. The study results suggest that scaffolds based on aliphatic polyesters and ceramics, which are considered biologically inactive materials, induce only limited new bone formation but could be an equivalent alternative to autologous bone when combined with a biologically active stimulus such as bone morphogenetic proteins.
Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified