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Osstem Implant to develop synthetic bone by 2026

Ha Kyung-Won (middle), director of Osstem Implant’s Bone Science Research Institute, and fellow senior researchers holding up diverse bone grafting materials. (Image: Osstem Implant)

Mon. 30. January 2023


SEOUL, South Korea: Specialists at the Osstem’s Bone Science Research Institute devote themselves to developing ways to regenerate bone and soft tissue by applying a state-of-the-art molecular and cell biology technique to tissue response and taking a physico-chemical approach to implant and bio-implant materials.

Development of an industry first: Bioabsorbable apatite surface technology

Ha Kyung-Won (right) at the research centre conducting tests on A-Oss with fellow senior researchers. (Image: Osstem Implant)

In 2013, Osstem’s Bone Science Research Institute developed the first bioabsorbable apatite surface technology that enables the rapid formation of bone by maintaining excellent blood wettability without having to keep the implants in solution. The technology combines the strengths of sandblasting with alumina, of acid etching and of apatite surface processing. The researchers coated the sandblasted and acid-etched surface with a layer of apatite of 20 nm in thickness. The apatite is resorbable and has an inorganic constituent with a degree of crystallinity that is identical to that of human bone. Thus, it has been found to improve osseointegration by over 30% compared with the sandblasted and acid-etched surface and solves the issue of peeling of the coating, which is an occasional problem of a hydroxyapatite coating. The outcome was reported in a study published in 2020 in the Journal of the American Dental Association.

Through continued research on the mechanism of tissue regeneration in accordance with the properties of the implant’s surface, the Bone Science Research Institute will further enhance the global competitiveness and product value of implants with a bioabsorbable hydroxyapatite-coated surface by developing and adopting unrivalled technologies. The products are available in global markets, including the US and Europe, and are sold under the brand name ET NH implant system (Hiossen Implant).

Plans to unveil bone grafting material based on osteoinductive composite material

The A-Oss bone grafting material was launched in 2013 and obtained the European CE mark for Class Ⅲ medical devices in 2020. Currently, A-Oss is available from 25 overseas subsidiaries of Osstem in Canada, Germany and Japan, as well as from its headquarters in South Korea. It is also available in some other countries, including the US, under the brand name A-Graft (Hiossen Implant). The 3D connected microporous structure of A-Oss facilitates the inflow of bodily fluids and the ingrowth of blood vessels and attachment of osteoblasts and fibrin network and maintains its volume while bone is regenerated.

“Based on proprietary organic substance removal technology of Osstem, we remove immunogens and possible sources of infection. A-Oss is a safe and pure inorganic bone grafting material,” said Ha Kyung-Won, director of Osstem’s Bone Science Research Institute. “A-Oss delivers excellent new bone formation by providing an environment favourable to interaction, proliferation and differentiation of bone cells owing to its optimised surface, porous structure and granule shape,” he explained.

A-Oss bone grafting material. (Image: Osstem Implant)

Osstem’s Bone Science Research Institute aims to position A-Oss as the top heterogenous bone grafting material in the global market this year. In the first half of 2022, the institute introduced an upgraded A-Oss in South Korea that has a 36% higher ability to form bone compared with previous products, and this improvement was achieved by controlling calcium ionic behaviour.

The institute has diversified its product line by launching products such as A-Oss Collagen and Q-Oss+ Collagen and by adding collagen to existing products, such as A-Oss and Q-Oss. It is now concentrating its efforts on developing new synthetic materials, such as LCA-R and LCA-N, and an osteoinductive composite material that is hoped to shift the paradigm of bone grafting materials.

LCA-R is scheduled for launch in 2023. According to Ha, it is being developed using new synthetic material and has delivered an ossification performance identical to that of allogeneic bone. He believes that LCA-R will become the next-generation bone grafting material, having outstanding bone formation and volume maintenance ability, all thanks to its synthetic bone (tentatively called LCA-A), which has physical, chemical and biological properties identical to that of autogenous bone, exceeding the level of allogeneic bone. As the originator, Osstem’s Bone Science Research Institute aims to pioneer a new bone grafting material market by 2026.

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