Evolution of bone transplantation: Molecular, cellular and tissue strategies to engineer human bone

Michael J. Yaszemski, Richard G. Payne, Wilson C. Hayes, Robert Langer, Antonios G. Mikos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

626 Scopus citations


Bone defects occur in a wide variety of clinical situations, and their reconstruction to provide mechanical integrity to the skeleton is a necessary step in the patient's rehabilitation. The current gold standard for bone reconstruction, the autogenous bone graft, works well in many circumstances. However, autograft reconstruction, along with the available alternatives of allogenous bone graft or poly(methylmethacrylate) bone cement, do not solve all instances of bone deficiency. Novel materials, cellular transplantation and bioactive molecule delivery are being explored alone and in various combinations to address the problem of bone deficiency. The goal of these strategies is to exploit the body's natural ability to repair injured bone with new bone tissue, and to then remodel that new bone in response to the local stresses it experiences. In general, the strategies discussed in this paper attempt to provide the reconstructed region with appropriate initial mechanical properties, encourage new bone to form in the region, and then gradually degrade to allow the new bone to remodel and assume the mechanical support function. Several of the concepts presented below are already finding clinical applications in early patient trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-185
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1996


  • Bone regeneration
  • Bone transplantation
  • Degradable polymers
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biomaterials
  • Mechanics of Materials


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