Craniofacial injuries can result from trauma, tumor ablation, or infection and may require multiple surgical revisions. To address the challenges associated with treating craniofacial bone defects, an ideal material should have the ability to fit complex defects (i.e. be conformable), provide temporary protection to the brain until the bone heals, and enhance tissue regeneration with the delivery of biologics. In this study, we evaluated the ability of injectable lysine-derived polyurethane (PUR)/allograft biocomposites to promote bone healing in critical-size rabbit calvarial defects. The biocomposites exhibited favorable injectability, characterized by a low yield stress to initiate flow of the material and a high initial viscosity to minimize the adverse phenomena of extravasation and filter pressing. After injection, the materials cured within 10-12 min to form a tough, elastomeric solid that maintained mechanical integrity during the healing process. When injected into a critical-size calvarial defect in rabbits, the biocomposites supported ingrowth of new bone. The addition of 80 νg mL-1 recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein-2 (rhBMP-2) enhanced new bone formation in the interior of the defect, as well as bridging of the defect with new bone. These observations suggest that injectable reactive PUR/allograft biocomposites are a promising approach for healing calvarial defects by providing both mechanical stability as well as local delivery of rhBMP-2.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering