Bioinorganics and biomaterials: bone repair

Pamela Habibovic, J.E. Barralet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

338 Citations (Scopus)


The field of bioinorganics is well established in the development of a variety of therapies. However, their application to bone regeneration, specifically by way of localized delivery from functional implants, is in its infancy and is the topic of this review. The toxicity of inorganics is species, dose and duration specific. Little is known about how inorganic ions are effective therapeutically since their use is often the result of serendipity, observations from nutritional deficiency or excess and genetic disorders. Many researchers point to early work demonstrating a role for their element of interest as a micronutrient critical to or able to alter bone growth, often during skeletal development, as a basis for localized delivery. While one can appreciate how a deficiency can cause disruption of healing, it is difficult to explain how a locally delivered excess in a preclinical model or patient, which is presumably of normal nutritional status, can evoke more bone or faster healing. The review illustrates that inorganics can positively affect bone healing but various factors make literature comparisons difficult. Bioinorganics have the potential to have just as big an impact on bone regeneration as recombinant proteins without some of the safety concerns and high costs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3013-3026
JournalActa biomaterialia
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • IR-80790
  • Calcium
  • Bone
  • METIS-283514
  • Bioceramic
  • Phosphate
  • Bioinorganic


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