Multimodal porogen platforms for calcium phosphate cement degradation
Calcium phosphate cements (CPCs) represent excellent bone substitute materials due to their biocompatibility and injectability. However, their poor degradability and lack of macroporosity limits bone regeneration. The addition of poly(d,l‐lactic‐co‐glycolic acid) (PLGA) particles improves macroporosity and therefore late stage material degradation. CPC degradation and hence, bone formation at an early stage remains challenging, due to the delayed onset of PLGA degradation (i.e., after 2–3 weeks). Consequently, we here explored multimodal porogen platforms based on sucrose porogens (for early pore formation) and PLGA porogens (for late pore formation) to enhance CPC degradation and analyzed mechanical properties, dynamic in vitro degradation and in vivo performance in a rat femoral bone defect model. Porogen addition to CPC showed to decrease compressive strength of all CPC formulations; transition of the crystal phase upon in vitro incubation increased compressive strength. Although dynamic in vitro degradation showed rapid sucrose dissolution within 1 week, no additional effects on CPC degradation or bone formation were observed upon in vivo implantation.