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Volume 17 , Issue 3
May/June 2002

Pages 321–330


In Vitro Osteoclast Resorption of Bone Substitute Biomaterials Used for Implant Site Augmentation: A Pilot Study

James C. Taylor, BSc, DMD, Sheldon E. Cuff, BSc, DDS,James P. L. Leger, BSc, PhD, Amani Morra, BSc, DDS, Gail I. Anderson, BVSc, MSc, PhD


PMID: 12074446

Purpose: This observational study examined the resorptive behavior of normal neonatal rabbit osteoclasts grown on slices of bovine cortical bone as compared to samples of commercially available bone substitute biomaterials. It also examined the surface characteristics of these materials. Materials and Methods: The 11 materials tested fell into 3 groups: (1) bone-derived, including freeze-dried human rib block, human demineralized freeze-dried bone, and deproteinated bovine bone; (2)synthetic hydroxyapatites (HA); and (3) synthetic non-HA, including coated methacrylates and coated silica glass. After 4 days in culture, 1 group of samples of each material underwent scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to evaluate resorptive pitting versus controls, while another group underwent tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase staining and light microscopy to examine osteoclast numbers and morphology. The 2 bovinederived HA materials also underwent immunohistochemical staining and surface chemistry analysis. Results: While most of these materials supported osteoclast attachment, some spreading, and survival in culture, only the bone-derived materials, with the exception of sintered deproteinated bovine bone, showed large scalloped-edged resorption pits with trails and exposed collagen when examined by SEM, although not to the same extent as unprocessed natural bone material. The HA materials and the sintered deproteinated bovine bone showed evidence of etching with smaller pits but no evidence of resorptive trail formation. The non-HA materials showed no evidence of pit formation or trails. Under immunohistochemical staining, Bio-Oss appeared to be positive for type I collagen after osteoclast activity on its surface, while Osteograf/N showed no positive staining. Surface chemistry analysis revealed nitrogen present in Bio-Oss specimens (0.17% to 0.47%), while there was no nitrogen detected in the Osteograf/N (0.00%); the percent nitrogen observed in normal bovine bone controls was 6.01% to 9.25%. Discussion: The bone-derived materials supported osteoclast activity on the material surface in a way that facilitated formation of the more complex resorption pits in vitro. Assuming the rate of pit formation observed in vitro mimics that observed in vivo, the quantity and type of osteoclastic remodeling seen on non–bone-derived materials—and perhaps sintered bone-derived materials—would be extremely slow to negligible. Physiologic removal of non–bone-derived bone substitutes in vivo may occur by methods other than osteoclast resorption. Conclusions: Allogenous and xenogenous bone-derived materials that undergo delayed physiologic resorption may be more appropriately used with a staged surgical approach when used in sites intended to support osseointegrated dental implants. The combination of collagen staining and the presence of nitrogen suggest that there may be residual protein in Bio-Oss. (INT J ORAL MAXILLOFAC IMPLANTS 2002;17:321–330)


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