Philipp Stockmann, Jung Park, Cornelius von Wilmowsky, Emeka Nkenke, Endre Felszeghy, Jan-Friedrich Dehner, Christian Schmitt, Christian Tudor, and Karl Andreas Schlegel
Due to donor side morbidity and the absence of osteogenic properties in bone substitutes, there is a growing need for an alternative to traditional bone grafting within the scope of tissue engineering. This animal study was conducted to compare the in vivo osteogenic potential of adipose-derived (AD), periosteum-derived (PD) and bone marrow-derived (BM) mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells (MSC). Autologous mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells of named tissue origin were induced into osteogenic differentiation following in vitro cell expansion. Ex vivo cultivated cells were seeded on a collagen scaffold and subsequently added to freshly created monocortical calvarial bone defects in 21 domestic pigs. Pure collagen scaffold served as a control defect. The animals were sacrificed at specific time points and de novo bone formation was quantitatively analyzed by histomorphometry. Bone volume/total defect volume (BV/TV) and the mineralization rate of newly formed bone were compared among the groups. In the early stages of wound healing, up to 30 days, the test defects did not show better bone regeneration than those in the control defect, but the bone healing process in the test defects was accelerated in the later stage compared to those in the control defect. All the test defects showed complete osseous healing after 90 days compared to those in the control defect. During the observation period, no significant differences in BV/TV and mineralization of newly formed bone among the test defects were observed. Irrespective of the tissue sources of MSC, the speed and pattern of osseous healing after cell transplantations into monocortical bone defects were comparable. Our results indicate that the efficiency of autologous AD-MSC, PD-MSC and BM-MSC transplantation following ex vivo cell expansion is not significantly different for the guided regeneration of bone defects.