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Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1995 Sep;(318):222-30.

Long-term healing of bone using recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein 2.

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  • 1School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University, North Grafton, MA 01536, USA.


A 2.5-cm-long middiaphyseal plate-stabilized segmental defect in the right femora of 5 adult sheep was implanted with 1.5 mg of recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein 2 mixed with inactivated demineralized ovine bone matrix. Bone healing was evaluated for 12 months using clinical, radiographic, gross pathologic, and histologic techniques. Bone formation within the defect was first visible radiographically between Weeks 2 and 4 after surgery; bone union was apparent between Weeks 12 and 16, at which time the plates were removed. Recanalization of the medullary cavity with neocortex formation was near completion at Week 52. Bone mineral content at the defect sites equaled that of the nonsurgically treated intact femora by Week 16. Perifemoral soft tissue mineralization did not occur, and callus size was not greater than that formed with autograft. By Week 52, the sheep were not lame, and at necropsy the surgically treated femora were rigidly healed. Woven and lamellar bone bridged the defect site. An apparently normal sequence of ossification, modeling, and remodeling events had occurred. Recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein 2 mixed with a suitable carrier could provide an alternative to autograft for use in a variety of orthopaedic procedures.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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