Orthopaedic applications of bone graft & graft substitutes: a review

Indian J Med Res. 2010 Jul;132:15-30.


Treatment of delayed union, malunion, and nonunion is a challenge to the orthopaedic surgeons in veterinary and human fields. Apart from restoration of alignment and stable fixation, in many cases adjunctive measures such as bone-grafting or use of bone-graft substitutes are of paramount importance. Bone-graft materials usually have one or more components: an osteoconductive matrix, which acts as scaffold to new bone growth; osteoinductive proteins, which support mitogenesis of undifferentiated cells; and osteogenic cells, which are capable of forming bone in the appropriate environment. Autologous bone remains the "gold standard" for stimulating bone repair and regeneration, but its availability may be limited and the procedure to harvest the material is associated with complications. Bone-graft substitutes can either substitute autologous bone graft or expand an existing amount of autologous bone graft. We review the currently available bone graft and graft substitutes for the novel therapeutic approaches in clinical setting of orthopaedic surgery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bone Development / physiology*
  • Bone Regeneration / physiology*
  • Bone Substitutes*
  • Bone Transplantation / methods*
  • Calcium Phosphates
  • Calcium Sulfate
  • Ceramics / therapeutic use
  • Durapatite
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / therapeutic use
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*
  • Orthopedic Procedures / methods*
  • Polymers / therapeutic use


  • Bone Substitutes
  • Calcium Phosphates
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Polymers
  • Durapatite
  • tricalcium phosphate
  • Calcium Sulfate