eCM (Eur Cell Mater / e Cells & Materials) Not-for-profit Open Access
Created by Scientists, for Scientists
 ISSN:1473-2262         NLM:100973416 (link)         DOI:10.22203/eCM

2010   Volume No 20 – pages 162-177

Title: Biological responses of brushite-forming Zn- and ZnSr- substituted beta-tricalcium phosphate bone cements

Author: S Pina, SI Vieira, P Rego, PMC Torres, OAB da Cruz e Silva, EF da Cruz e Silva, JMF Ferreira

Address: Dept. of Ceramics and Glass Engineering,University of Aveiro, CICECO, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal

E-mail: sandra.pina at

Key Words: Zinc, strontium, brushite cement, osteoblast proliferation, alkaline phosphatase, MC3T3-E1 cell adhesion, Type-I collagen, trabecular bone regeneration.

Publication date: September 7th 2010

Abstract: The core aim of this study was to investigate zinc (Zn)- and zinc and strontium (ZnSr)-containing brushite-forming beta-tricalcium phosphate (TCP) cements for their effects on proliferation and differentiation of osteoblastic-like cells (MC3T3-E1 cell line) as well as for their in vivo behaviour in trabecular bone cylindrical defects in a pilot study. In vitro proliferation and maturation responses of MC3T3-E1 osteoblastic-like cells to bone cements were studied at the cellular and molecular levels. The Zn- and Sr-containing brushite cements were found to stimulate pre-osteoblastic proliferation and osteoblastic maturation. Indeed, MC3T3-E1 cells exposed to the powdered cements had increased proliferative rates and higher adhesiveness capacity, in comparison to control cells. Furthermore, they exhibited higher alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and increased Type-I collagen secretion and fibre deposition into the extracellular matrix. Proliferative and collagen deposition properties were more evident for cells grown in cements doped with Sr. The in vivo osteoconductive propertiesof the ZnCPC and ZnSrCPC cements were also pursued. Histological and histomorphometric analyses were performed at 1 and 2 months after implantation, using carbonated apatite cement (Norian SRS®) as control. There was no evidence of cement-induced adverse foreign body reactions, and furthermore ZnCPC and ZnSrCPC cements revealed better in vivo performance in comparison to the control apatite cement. Additionally, the presence of both zinc and strontium resulted in the highest rate of new bone formation. These novel results indicate that the investigated ZnCPC and ZnSrCPC cements are both biocompatible and osteoconductive, being good candidate materials to use as bone substitutes.

Article download: Pages 162-177 (PDF file)
DOI: 10.22203/eCM.v020a14