Eatontown, New Jersey - Biodegradable polyurethane will play a significant role in a craniofacial reconstruction programme currently being created in the US.
Osteotech, Inc., which develops biological solutions for regenerative healing, said 2 May today that its Plexur biocomposite, made of allograft bone fibres or particles and a novel biodegradable polyurethane, will be used in a programme led by Dr Jeffrey Hollinger of Carnegie Mellon University.
The aim is to create a new type of Plexur, to help healing and improve outcomes, said the Ostetoech announcement. A specific task is to develop a biocomposite with high compressive, torsional or bending strength.
The Plexur approach, where Osteotech has more than 33 patents and 65 pending patent applications, uses bone tissue for procedure-specific surgical uses, in combination with various polymers.
Pointing out the great need for regenerative solutions for traumatic war injuries to the skull, Sam Owusu-Akyaw, Osteotech's president and ceo, said the Plexur technology "has the potential to offer new solutions in reconstruction of the craniofacial region and elsewhere in the body to treat damage from these very difficult injuries."
Hollinger will work on the biocomposite with Dr Scott Guelcher at Vanderbilt University, and Osteotech's scientific team. The research, coordinated by the New Jersey Centre for Biomaterials and Dr Joachim Kohn of Rutgers University, is part of a multi-institutional effort funded by a $42.5 million grant from the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine (AFIRM).
Osteotech, based in Eatontown, New Jersey, already has a license from Carnegie Mellon University for the biodegradable polyurethane that is to be used in this work. This material, in combination with Plexur technology, has also been licensed to Vanderbilt University for research.
AFIRM was recently created by the United States Department of Defense to provide funding for the development of regenerative technologies that can be used to treat the most critically injured service members, as well as civilian patients.
PIC Injuries received in the war in Iraq from improvised explosive devices are causing increasing levels of survivable severe blast trauma, says AFIRM.