The contemporary use of implants for orthopaedic and dental applications has witness gradual evolution with significant advances coming from the speciality of dental implantology. The real expectation of endosseous implant was to accomplish their task through mechanical anchorage with bone i.e. osseointegration as described by Branemark et al. in 1952. It is of great significance and the basis of the current treatment protocol regarding the least possible time required by patients to perform the complex chain of events that may lead to early osseointegration. Hence, various surface treatment modalities like machined, sandblasted, acid-etched, anodized, plasma-sprayed, etc. have been explored as the possible means for improving the bio-response of titanium (Ti) implants in bone.
In our attempt, polycaprolactone (PCL) with gelatine in conjunction with osteoinductive (dexamethasone, ascorbic acid, and β-glycerophosphate) and osteoconductive (hydroxyapatite) chemicals were incorporated in the optimized osteogenic nanofibrous coating, fabricated on the endosseous portion of the titanium implants via modification of the electrospinning apparatus. After favourable invitro results, the coated implants were evaluated in a pre-clinical trial done in rabbit study models. In the animal study, the coated implant showed an increase of 36.92 % pullout strength compared to controls. Further, the mean periotest values were significantly lower in test implants (-2.08 ± 0.47) compared to controls (-0.52 ± 0.31). Additionally, micro-CT and histomorphometric analysis revealed a significant increase in bone mineral density (23.22%), bone mineral content (13.39%) and bone to implant contact percentage (23.75%) for osteogenic nanofibrous coated titanium implants when compared to uncoated control titanium implants available commercially, confirming that osteogenic nanofibrous coating significantly increases the magnitude of osteogenesis in the peri-implant zone and favours the dynamics of osseointegration. Hence, our work involves the combination of electrospun nanofibre technologies and implants so as to pursue applied bioengineering concepts yielding advance implants beyond the present state-of-the-art.
1. Advantages of your implants over the conventional ones in the market:
Better and prompt osseointegration compared to commercially available implants in the market as noted in the recent pre-clinical trials. Further, we firmly believe that the quality of osseointegration of such coated implants in humans will be of greater magnitude due to the higher ratio of vascularity in humans.
2. How will your technology help in the coming years?
The technology can result in selective and targeted tissue regeneration around the implants. We have incorporated bone-forming chemicals in the coating to regenerate bone around the implants. Likewise, other/native tissues (apart from bone) around the implant could also be regenerated with slight modification in the coating composition.
3. Do you have any cost analysis or cost-benefit analysis?
The added cost will be much less than the current price of such products.