Polymer Science Faculty Research


Building Bone with Polymers: An Unconventional Approach

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date

Spring 3-16-2014


The current surgical options to address critical sized orthopaedic defects each have significant limitations. Versatile, resorbable polymeric materials for scaffold construction with sufficient mechanical properties to minimize supplementary external fixation could be used for numerous clinical applications where off the shelf solutions are not viable. The incorporation of the tethered growth factors, such as osteogenic growth peptide, offer a cost-effective solution to the current recombinant bone morphogenic protein-type technologies, which typically costs in excess of $10,000 per treatment. The safety of off label use of freely diffusing growth factors, like BMP, which are used to accelerate healing has been called into question. These concerns highlight the need for new approaches using tethered surface receptor-activated subunits, which remain at the implant site and desired site of action. The proposed osteogenic growth peptide-derivatized scaffolds can provide both mechanical reinforcement and enhance the bioactivity necessary for healing critical sized bone defects in large animal models.

Publication Title

Abstracts of Papers of the American Chemical Society