Cylindrical critical size defects were created at the distal femoral condyles bilaterally of eight female adult sheep. Titanium implants with 2-mm concentric gaps were inserted and the gaps were filled with one of the four materials: allograft; a synthetic 15-amino acid cell-binding peptide coated hydroxyapatite (ABM/P-15); hydroxyapatite + βtricalciumphosphate+ Poly-Lactic-Acid (HA/βTCP-PDLLA); or ABM/P-15+HA/βTCP-PDLLA. After nine weeks, bone-implant blocks were harvested and sectioned for micro-CT scanning, push-out test, and histomorphometry. Significant bone formation and implant fixation could be observed in all four groups. Interestingly, the microarchitecture of the ABM/P-15 group was significantly different from the control group. Tissue volume fraction and thickness were significantly greater in the ABM/P-15 group than in the allograft group. Bone formation and bone ingrowth to porous titanium implant were not significantly different among the four groups. The ABM/P-15 group had similar shear mechanical properties on implant fixation as the allograft group. Adding HA/βTCP-PDLLA to ABM/P-15 did not significantly change these parameters. This study revealed that ABM/P-15 had significantly bone formation in concentric gap, and its enhancements on bone formation and implant fixation were at least as good as allograft. It is suggested that ABM/P-15 might be a good alternative biomaterial for bone implant fixation in this well-validated critical-size defect gap model in sheep. Nevertheless, future clinical researches should focus on prospective, randomized, controlled trials in order to fully elucidate whether ABM/P-15 could be a feasible candidate for bone substitute material in orthopedic practices.
Keywords: ABM/P-15; bone formation; histomorphometry; implant fixation; microarchitecture.
© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.