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Ont Health Technol Assess Ser. 2005;5(6):1-57. Epub 2005 Apr 1.

Osteogenic protein-1 for long bone nonunion: an evidence-based analysis.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the efficacy of osteogenic protein-1 (OP-1) for long bone nonunion.

CLINICAL NEED:

Although most fractures heal within a normal period, about 5% to 10% do not heal and are classified as delayed or nonunion fractures. Nonunion and segmental bone loss after fracture, reconstructive surgery, or lesion excision can present complex orthopedic problems, and the multiple surgical procedures often needed are associated with patient morbidity and reduced quality of life. Many factors contribute to the pathogenesis of a delayed union or nonunion fractures, including deficiencies of calcium, vitamin D, or vitamin C, and side effects of medications such as anticoagulants, steroids, some anti-inflammatory drugs, and radiation. It has been shown that smoking interferes with bone repair in several ways. INCIDENCE OF NONUNION AND DELAYED UNION CASES: An estimated 5% to 10% of fractures do not heal properly and go on to delayed union or nonunion. If this overall estimate of incidence were applied to the Ontario population, the estimated number of delayed union or nonunion in the province would be between 3,863 and 7,725. TREATMENT OF NONUNION CASES: The treatment of nonunion cases is a challenge to orthopedic surgeons. However, the basic principle behind treatment is to provide both mechanical and biological support to the nonunion site. Fracture stabilization and immobilization is frequently used with the other treatment modalities that provide biological support to the fractured bone. Biological support includes materials that could be served as a source of osteogenic cells (osteogenesis), a stimulator of mesenchymal cells (osteoinduction), or a scaffold-like structure (osteoconduction). The capacity to heal a fracture is a latent potential of the stromal stem cells, which synthesize new bone. This process has been defined as osteogenesis. Activation of the stem cells to initiate osteogenic response and to differentiate into bone-forming osteoblasts is called osteoinduction. These 2 properties accelerate the rate of fracture healing or reactivate the ineffective healing process. Osteoconduction occurs when passive structures facilitate the migration of osteoprogenitor cells, the perivascular tissue, and capillaries into these structures. BONE GRAFTS AND BONE GRAFT SUBSTITUTES: Bone graft and bone graft substitutes have one or more of the following components: Undifferentiated stem cellsGrowth factorsStructural latticeUndifferentiated stem cells are unspecialized, multipotential cells that can differentiate into a variety of specialized cells. They can also replicate themselves. The role of stem cells is to maintain and repair the tissue in which they are residing. A single stem cell can generate all cell types of that tissue. Bone marrow is a source of at least 2 kinds of stem cells. Hematopoietic stem cells that form all types of blood cells, and bone marrow stromal stem cells that have osteogenic properties and can generate bone, cartilage, and fibrous tissue. Bone marrow has been used to stimulate bone formation in bone defects and cases of nonunion fractures. Bone marrow can be aspirated from the iliac crest and injected percutaneously with fluoroscopic guidance into the site of the nonunion fracture. The effectiveness of this technique depends on the number and activity of stem cells in the aspirated bone marrow. It may be possible to increase the proliferation and speed differentiation of stem cells by exposing them to growth factor or by combining them with collagen. Many growth factors and cytokines induced in response to injury are believed to have a considerable role in the process of repair. Of the many bone growth factors studied, bone morphogenetics (BMPs) have generated the greatest attention because of their osteoinductive potential. The BMPs that have been most widely studied for their ability to induce bone regeneration in humans include BMP-2 and BMP-7 (osteogenic protein). Human osteogenic protein-1 (OP-1) has been cloned and produced with recombinant technology and is free from the risk of infection or allergic reaction. The structural lattice is osteoconductive; it supports the ingrowth of developing capillaries and perivascular tissues. Three distinct groups of structural lattice have been identified: collagen, calcium sulphate, and calcium phosphate. These materials can be used to replace a lost segment of bone. GRAFTS USED FOR NONUNION: Autologous bone graft is generally considered the gold standard and the best material for grafting because it contains several elements that are critical in promoting bone formation, including osteoprogenitor cells, the matrix, and bone morphogenetic proteins. The osteoconductive property of cancellous autograft is related to the porosity of bone. The highly porous, scaffold-like structure of the graft allows host osteoblasts and host osteoprogenitor cells to migrate easily into the area of the defect and to begin regeneration of bone. Sources of cancellous bone are the iliac crest, the distal femur, the greater trochanter, and the proximal tibia. However, harvesting the autologous bone graft is associated with postoperative pain at the donor site, potential injury to the surrounding arteries, nerves, and tissues, and the risk of infection. Thus the development of synthetic materials with osteoconductive and osteoinductive properties that can eliminate the need for harvesting has become a major goal of orthopedic research. Allograft is the graft of tissue between individuals who are of the same species but are of a disparate genotype. Allograft has osteoconductive and limited osteoinductive properties. Demineralized bone matrix (DBM) is human cortical and cancellous allograft. These products are prepared by acid extraction of allograft bone, resulting in the loss of most of the mineralized component while collagen and noncollagenous proteins, including growth factors, are retained. Figures 1 to 5 demonstrate the osteogenic, osteoinduction, and osteoconduction properties of autologous bone graft, allograft, OP-1, bone graft substitutes, and bone marrow. Figure 1.Autologous Bone GraftFigure 2.Osteogenic Protein-1Figure 3.Allograft bone and Demineralized Bone MatrixFigure 4.Bone Graft SubstitutesFigure 5.Autologous Bone Marrow Graft NEW TECHNOLOGY BEING REVIEWED: OSTEOGENIC PROTEIN-1 Health Canada issued a Class IV licence for OP-1 in June 2004 (licence number 36320). The manufacturer of OP-1 is Stryker Biotech (Hapkinton, MA). The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a humanitarian device exemption for the application of the OP-1 implant as an "alternative to autograft in recalcitrant long bone nonunions where use of autograft is unfeasible and alternative treatments have failed." Regulatory agencies in Europe, Australia, and New Zealand have permitted the use of this implant in specific cases, such as in tibial nonunions, or in more general cases, such as in long bone nonunions. According to the manufacturer, OP-1 is indicated for the treatment of long bone nonunions. It is contraindicated in the patient has a hypersensitivity to the active substance or collagen, and it should not be applied at the site of a resected tumour that is at or near the defect or fracture. Finally, it should not be used in patients who are skeletally immature (< 18 years of age), or if there is no radiological evidence of closure of epiphysis.

REVIEW STRATEGY:

OBJECTIVE:

To summarize the safety profile and effectiveness of OP-1 in the treatment of cases of long bone nonunion and bone defectsTo compare the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of OP-1 in the treatment of long bone nonunions and bone defects with the alternative technologies, particularly the gold standard autologous bone graft.

LITERATURE SEARCH:

International Network of Agencies for Health Technology Assessments (INAHTA), the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and the CCTR (formerly Cochrane Controlled Trials Register) were searched for health technology assessments. MEDLINE, EMBASE, Medline In Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations were searched from January 1, 1996 to January 27, 2004 for studies on OP-1. The search was limited to English-language articles and human studies. The search yielded 47 citations. Three studies met inclusion criteria (2 RCTs and 1 Ontario-based study presented at an international conference.

SUMMARY OF FINDINGS:

Friedlaender et al. conducted a prospective, randomized, partially blinded clinical trial on the treatment tibial nonunions with OP-1. Tibial nonunions were chosen for this study because of their high frequency, challenging treatment requirements, and substantial morbidity. All of the nonunions were at least 9 months old and had shown no progress toward healing over the previous 3 months. The patients were randomized to receive either treatment with autologous bone grafting or treatment with OP-1 in a type-1 collagen carrier. Both groups received reduction and fixation with an intramedullary rod. Table 1 summarizes the clinical outcomes of this study. Table 1:Outcomes in a Randomized Clinical Trial on Tibial Nonunions: Osteogenic Protein-1 versus Autologous Bone GraftingClinical Indicator at 9 monthsSuccess by ProcedureOP-1 % (range)Autograft % (range)PWeight-bearing*8685not significantPain on Weight-bearing*8990not significantBridging seen on radiograph (at least 1 view)7584not significantBridging seen on radiograph (at least 3 views)6274not significantRepeated surgery*510not significantPhysician satisfaction8690not significantMean operative time in minutes (range)169 (58 - 420)178 (58 - 420)not significantMean operative blood loss in ml (range)254 (10-1,150)345 (35 - 1,200).049Mean length of stay in days (range)3.7 (0 - 18)4.1 (1 - 24)not significantPain at the donor siteN/A80N/AAt 6 months postsurgery20At 12 months postsurgery13Osteomyelitis % (number)3 (2/61)21 (13/61). (ABSTRACT TRUNCATED)

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