Howard J. Seeherman, X. Jian Li, Mary L. Bouxsein, John M. Wozney
Bone resorption preceding bone formation has been reported following the administration of recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein-2 (rhBMP-2) delivered in an absorbable collagen sponge (ACS) in metaphyseal bone. This study characterizes treatment with rhBMP-2/ACS in metaphyseal bone with use of a nonhuman primate core-defect model. Unilateral proximal femoral core defects were treated with 360 µg of rhBMP-2/ACS or ACS alone or were left untreated in seven, five, and five adult male cynomolgus monkeys, respectively. Distal femoral core defects in seven of the above animals were treated with 360 µg of rhBMP-2/ACS in one limb and ACS alone in the contralateral limb. Retention of rhBMP-2 in the proximal part of the femora was determined with use of tracer amounts of 125I-rhBMP-2 imaged with a gamma camera. The distal part of the femora was evaluated with in vivo computed tomography.Computed tomography and histological evaluation were performed on harvested segments in all animals at twenty-four weeks. The histological response in the proximal and distal parts of the femora containing core defects treated with 360 µg of rhBMP-2/ACS in one limb and ACS alone in the contralateral limb was evaluated at one, two, and four weeks in three animals pertime point. Approximately 39.9%, 24.2%, 3.4%, and 0.5% of the rhBMP-2 was retained in the proximal part of the femora at one, seven, fourteen, and twenty-one days, respectively. The mineral density and trabecular volume fraction of the core defects treated with rhBMP-2/ACS, those treated with ACS alone, and untreated core defects in the proximal part of the femora were 81%, 54%, and 20%, respectively, and 94%, 36%, and 31%, respectively, of the corresponding region in the contralateral limbs at twenty-four weeks. The mineral density and trabecular volume fraction of the region surrounding the core defects treated with rhBMP-2/ACS, those treated with ACS alone, and untreated core defects were 112%, 105%, and 104%, respectively, and 117%, 108%, and 107%, respectively, of the corresponding region in the contralateral limbs. Treatment with rhBMP-2/ACS increased the size of the proximal and distal core defects compared with treatment with ACS alone. Histological evaluation of the rhBMP-2/ACS-treated limbs demonstrated that bone resorption was initiated at one week in association withosteoclasts and receptor activator of nuclear factor-B ligand-positive stained spindle-shaped cells and peaked at two weeks. Bone formation was observed at two weeks and was ongoing at twenty-four weeks. Treatment of metaphyseal core defects with rhBMP-2/ACS resulted in bone resorption followed by bone formation in nonhuman primates. Use of rhBMP-2 delivered in a collagen sponge for metaphyseal fracture repair should be avoided when transient bone resorption may lead to loss of fixation or structural support.