header advert
You currently have no access to view or download this content. Please log in with your institutional or personal account if you should have access to through either of these
The Bone & Joint Journal Logo

Receive monthly Table of Contents alerts from The Bone & Joint Journal

Comprehensive article alerts can be set up and managed through your account settings

View my account settings

Get Access locked padlock


Strain imparted during impaction grafting may contribute to bony incorporation


Download PDF


In order to investigate the osteoinductive properties of allograft used in impaction grafting and the effect of strain during impaction on these properties, we designed an in vitro experiment to measure strain-related release of bone morphogenetic protein-7 (BMP-7) from fresh-frozen femoral head allograft. A total of 40 10 mm cubes of cancellous bone were cut from ten samples of fresh-frozen femoral head. The marrow was removed from the cubes and the baseline concentrations of BMP-7 were measured. Specimens from each femoral head were allocated to four groups and subjected to different compressive strains with a material testing machine, after which BMP-7 activity was reassessed. It was present in all groups. There was a linear increase of 102.1 pg/g (95% confidence interval 68.6 to 135.6) BMP-7 for each 10% increase in strain. At 80% strain the mean concentration of BMP-7 released (830.3 pg/g bone) was approximately four times that released at 20% strain. Activity of BMP-7 in fresh-frozen allograft has not previously been demonstrated. This study shows that the freezing and storage of femoral heads allows some maintenance of biological activity, and that impaction grafting provides a source of osteoinductive bone for remodelling.

We have shown that BMP-7 is released from fresh-frozen femoral head cancellous bone in proportion to the strain applied to the bone. This suggests that the impaction process itself may contribute to the biological process of remodelling and bony incorporation.

Correspondence should be sent to Mr T. N. Board; e-mail: tim@timboard.co.uk

For access options please click here