Successful dental implant integration requires a proper interfacial connection with alveolar bone to promote osseointegration involving extracellular matrix (ECM) attachment to the implant surface. The EU-funded BEDIMPLANTS (Development of novel biomimetic engineered dental implants for periodontal ligament regeneration) project aimed to develop biomimetic engineered implants that self-promote the regeneration of periodontal ligaments. The utilisation of the native periodontal ECM (collagen, hyaluronic acid) and cell signalling molecules by grafting onto titanium implant surfaces presents a promising approach. It provides the environment for integration and proliferation of primary human gingival fibroblast and dental pulp stem cells. Grafting a biomimetic ECM onto titanium surfaces in implants could provide the appropriate cell cocktail for predictable regeneration of bone and periodontal ligament tissues. Project members designed implants with the surface created by grafting bioactive self-assembled monolayers of osteoinductive drugs and biomimetic ECM based on cell signalling molecules and polysaccharides. This surface modification provided the adequate environment for the stem cells to integrate, differentiate and proliferate within a 3D milieu. Importantly, the proposed design does not involve the use of harmful solvents or chemicals. The research of the project can be translated to other metal-based regenerative implant therapies such as craniofacial plates, fixation screws and hip replacement implants, among others.
Dental implants, implant integration, extracellular matrix, BEDIMPLANTS, dental pulp stem cells