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Laser-Modified Surface Enhances Osseointegration and Biomechanical Anchorage of Commercially Pure Titanium Implants for Bone-Anchored Hearing Systems.

Journal article
Authors Furqan A. Shah
Martin L Johansson
Omar Omar
Hanna Simonsson
Anders Palmquist
Peter Thomsen
Published in PloS one
Volume 11
Issue 6
Pages e0157504
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication year 2016
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Biomaterials
Pages e0157504
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.015...
Subject categories Biomaterials Science

Abstract

Osseointegrated implants inserted in the temporal bone are a vital component of bone-anchored hearing systems (BAHS). Despite low implant failure levels, early loading protocols and simplified procedures necessitate the application of implants which promote bone formation, bone bonding and biomechanical stability. Here, screw-shaped, commercially pure titanium implants were selectively laser ablated within the thread valley using an Nd:YAG laser to produce a microtopography with a superimposed nanotexture and a thickened surface oxide layer. State-of-the-art machined implants served as controls. After eight weeks' implantation in rabbit tibiae, resonance frequency analysis (RFA) values increased from insertion to retrieval for both implant types, while removal torque (RTQ) measurements showed 153% higher biomechanical anchorage of the laser-modified implants. Comparably high bone area (BA) and bone-implant contact (BIC) were recorded for both implant types but with distinctly different failure patterns following biomechanical testing. Fracture lines appeared within the bone ~30-50 μm from the laser-modified surface, while separation occurred at the bone-implant interface for the machined surface. Strong correlations were found between RTQ and BIC and between RFA at retrieval and BA. In the endosteal threads, where all the bone had formed de novo, the extracellular matrix composition, the mineralised bone area and osteocyte densities were comparable for the two types of implant. Using resin cast etching, osteocyte canaliculi were observed directly approaching the laser-modified implant surface. Transmission electron microscopy showed canaliculi in close proximity to the laser-modified surface, in addition to a highly ordered arrangement of collagen fibrils aligned parallel to the implant surface contour. It is concluded that the physico-chemical surface properties of laser-modified surfaces (thicker oxide, micro- and nanoscale texture) promote bone bonding which may be of benefit in situations where large demands are imposed on biomechanically stable interfaces, such as in early loading and in compromised conditions.

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