Physicochemical characterization of biomaterials commonly used in dentistry as bone substitutes--comparison with human bone

J Biomed Mater Res B Appl Biomater. 2010 Feb;92(2):409-419. doi: 10.1002/jbm.b.31529.


The present work focuses on the physicochemical characterization of selected mineral-based biomaterials that are frequently used in dental applications. The selected materials are commercially available as granules from different biological origins: bovine, porcine, and coralline. Natural and calcined human bone were used for comparison purposes. Besides a classical rationalization of chemical composition and crystallinity, a major emphasis was placed on the measurement of various morphostructural properties such as particle size, porosity, density, and specific surface area. Such properties are crucial to acquiring a full interpretation of the in vivo performance. The studied samples exhibited distinct particle sizes (between 200 and 1000 microm) and shapes. Mercury intrusion revealed not only that the total sample porosity varied considerably (33% for OsteoBiol, 50% for PepGen P-15, and 60% for BioOss) but also that a significant percentage of that porosity corresponded to submicron pores. Biocoral was not analyzed by this technique as it possesses larger pores than those of the porosimeter upper limit. The density values determined for the calcined samples were close to the theoretical values of hydroxyapatite. However, the values for the collagenated samples were lower, in accordance with their lower mineral content. The specific surface areas ranged from less than 1 m(2)/g (Biocoral) up to 60 m(2)/g (BioOss). The chemical and phase composition of most of the samples, the exception being Biocoral (aragonite), were hydroxyapatite based. Nonetheless, the samples exhibited different organic material content as a consequence of the distinct heat treatments that each had received.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anthozoa / chemistry
  • Biocompatible Materials / chemistry*
  • Bone Substitutes / chemistry*
  • Bone and Bones / chemistry*
  • Calcium Carbonate
  • Cattle
  • Compressive Strength
  • Dental Materials / chemistry*
  • Durapatite / chemistry
  • Gases
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Mercury / chemistry
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Particle Size
  • Porosity
  • Powders
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared
  • Swine
  • Transplantation, Heterologous
  • X-Ray Diffraction


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Bone Substitutes
  • Dental Materials
  • Gases
  • PepGen P-15
  • Powders
  • calcium carbonate Biocoral
  • osteobiol
  • Durapatite
  • Mercury
  • Calcium Carbonate