Development of a device for the delivery of agents to bone during distraction osteogenesis

J Craniofac Surg. 2001 Jan;12(1):19-25. doi: 10.1097/00001665-200101000-00004.


Various agents have been theoretically and experimentally implicated as mediators of distraction osteogenesis (DO). The purpose of this study was to develop a vehicle for the potential delivery of these factors to the region of the distraction site in an attempt to manipulate this biologic process. Three adult mongrel dogs (12 months old) had oblique osteotomies performed bilaterally through the gonial regions. In group I, the external distracter was affixed to the right hemimandible of two dogs (n = 2 hemimandibles) with cannulated pins (external diameter = 1.5 mm; lumen diameter = 1.0 mm; length = 60 mm), whereas the distracter on the left was affixed with standard, noncannulated pins of the same dimensions. In group II, cannulated pins were used to affix the external distracter to both hemimandibles (n = 2 hemimandibles) of a dog. The devices were activated after a 5-day latency period and were lengthened at a rate of 1 mm/day for 20 days. During the distraction period, 0.1 ml/d of sterile india ink was injected into the cannulated pins, after which the sterile stylet was replaced. The activation protocol was followed by 28 days of fixation (consolidation period). The hemimandibles from group I underwent removal of soft tissues, acetone fixation, and gross examination/photography, whereas the hemimandibles from group II were prepared for histologic evaluation (whole mount, hematoxylin and eosin staining). All dogs survived to the end of the study and demonstrated successful DO without evidence of complications. Hemimandibles in group I displayed evidence of india ink on both the lingual and buccal cortex around the cannulated pin site, in the regenerate and on the neocortices of the distracted segment. Hemimandibles of group II showed histologic evidence of the india ink being deposited densely around the cannulated pin site and extending in a radial fashion around the pin site into the regenerate. This study demonstrates for the first time a vehicle device for the delivery of an inert dye to the regenerate site during distraction osteogenesis. This vehicle offers the potential of delivery of various factors implicated in distraction osteogenesis (i.e., mitogens) in an attempt to alter this process and also substances (i.e., chemotherapy, antibiotics, etc.) for use in the treatment of various osteopathies.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Catheterization
  • Coloring Agents / administration & dosage
  • Dogs
  • Drug Delivery Systems / instrumentation*
  • Mandible / surgery*
  • Mandibular Advancement / methods
  • Osteogenesis, Distraction / instrumentation*


  • Coloring Agents