Volume-stable collagen matrices (VSCM) are conductive for the connective tissue upon soft tissue augmentation. Considering that collagen has osteoconductive properties, we have investigated the possibility that the VSCM also consolidates with the newly formed bone. To this end, we covered nine rat calvaria circular defects with a VSCM. After four weeks, histology, histomorphometry, quantitative backscattered electron imaging, and microcomputed tomography were performed. We report that the overall pattern of mineralization inside the VSCM was heterogeneous. Histology revealed, apart from the characteristic woven bone formation, areas of round-shaped hypertrophic chondrocyte-like cells surrounded by a mineralized extracellular matrix. Quantitative backscattered electron imaging confirmed the heterogenous mineralization occurring within the VSCM. Histomorphometry found new bone to be 0.7 mm2 (0.01 min; 2.4 max), similar to the chondrogenic mineralized extracellular matrix with 0.7 mm2 (0.0 min; 4.2 max). Microcomputed tomography showed the overall mineralized tissue in the defect to be 1.6 mm3 (min 0.0; max 13.3). These findings suggest that in a rat cranial defect, VSCM has a limited and heterogeneous capacity to support intramembranous bone formation but may allow the formation of bone via the endochondral route.
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)