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Nonunion caused by various reasons of fractures and bone defects has been a major problem of clinical orthopedic rehabilitation. With the rapid development of tissue engineering, product quality testing needs standard bone defect model. However, the length of bone critical-size defects has not been ascertained.


To establish rabbit radial bone defect models and to determine the length of rabbit radial bone critical-size defects.


Eighteen male New Zealand white rabbits (2.0-2.5 kg) were randomly assigned into 6 groups and then 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17 mm segmental defects were created in the middle part of radius on both sides, respectively. The incisions were sutured and bandaged, but not fixed.


According to examination with naked eyes and X-ray, some of the segmental defects with the length of 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16 mm were completely repaired. But none of the defects with the length of 17 mm was repaired. Histological examination showed that there was trabecular bone formation, bone matrix, medullary cavity recanalization, revascularization and osteoblasts in the segmental defects with the length of 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16 mm. However, there were osteoblasts, osteoclasts in the 17 mm defects, but no medullary cavity recanalization or revascularization. Therefore, the length of bone critical-size defect in rabbit radius was 17 mm.


Zhou F, Li J, Yu L, Liao H, Ouyang J. Establishment of a radial bone critical defect model in a rabbit. Zhongguo Zuzhi Gongcheng Yanjiu yu Linchuang Kangfu. 2011;15(50): 9385-9388. [http://]

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