17Bone‐inspired Biomaterials

Frank A. Müller*

Otto Schott Institute of Materials Research (OSIM), Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Jena, Germany

17.1 Introduction

Most living beings mineralize at least a part of their bodies, usually for skeletal support (bone), but also for sexual attraction (antler), protection (armor, shells), or manducation (teeth). Biominerals like bone represent hybrid materials that combine organic (mainly collagen) and inorganic (carbonated hydroxy apatite (CHA)) phases to build up composites via a self‐assembly process (Figure 17.1). These composites show outstanding mechanical properties because they are highly hierarchically structured at many different length scales and because they combine the failure mechanisms of different materials classes.

Illustration of antlers, bone, and a tooth with their corresponding structures, compositions, and properties.

Figure 17.1 The bone family: structure, composition and properties.

In bone tissue engineering and bone regeneration, highly porous scaffold materials have to provide a pathway for cell attachment, bone ingrowth, and vascularization. Typically, macroporous osteoconductive bioceramics (e.g. hydroxyapatite (HA), β‐tricalcium phosphate (β‐TCP)) are supplied commercially for bone grafting. However, approaches that mimic the biological model more closely should aim (1) exactly to recreate the composition of the naturally occurring phases; (2) to rebuild the porous structure of the biomineral; and (3) to adjust ...

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