Magnesium-based bone implants: Immunohistochemical analysis of peri-implant osteogenesis by evaluation of osteopontin and osteocalcin expression



The functions of some bone proteins, as osteopontin (OPN) and osteocalcin (OC), have been discovered by the latest studies. This fact suggests the possibility of their immunodetection to characterize peri-implant osteogenesis and implant impact on it. Cylindrical pins of Mg alloys (MgCa0.8, LAE442, ZEK100, LANd442) and titanium alloy (TiAl6V4) were implanted into the tibial medullae of 46 rabbits. Each group was divided regarding to implant duration (3 and 6 months). Bone samples adjacent to the implants were decalcified and treated with routine histological and immunohistochemical protocols using OC and OPN-antibodies. OC was detected in matrix of compact bone, but very rarely in osteoid and bone cells. OPN was detected intracellularly and in osteoid. After 3 months, the highest level of both markers was found in titanium group, followed by LAE442-group. In contrast to LAE442 and TiAl6V4, the other Mg alloys showed increasing levels of OC after 6 months. Lower levels of OP and OC compared to the control group are related to the continuous implant degradation and instability of bone-implant interface in early post-surgical period. Reduced marker's expression in LAE442 and TiAl6V4 groups after 6 months may indicate stabilization of bone-implant interface and completion of peri-implant neo-osteogenesis. Declining characters of OC and OPN expression over the implantation time, as well as their lowest levels in late post-surgical term, suggest a more appropriate biocompatibility of LAE442, which therefore seems to be the most preferable of the tested materials for the use in orthopaedic applications. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 102A: 1449–1457, 2014.