Alendronate (ALN) is a nitrogen-bisphosphonate that may induce an anabolic effect on craniofacial bone repair when administrated in low doses. Based on this premise, this study analyzed the influence of prophylactic low doses of ALN on bone healing in defects created in rabbit mandible.Methods:
A 5 × 2-mm diameter deep defect was created in the calvaria of 28 rabbits. Fourteen of these rabbits received previously 50 μg/kg of 1% sodium ALN for 4 weeks, while the other rabbits received only 0.9% physiological saline solution (control). Animals were euthanized at 15 and 60 days postsurgery (n = 7), and the data were analyzed using histomorphometry and immunohistochemistry using the anti-CD34, bone morphogenetic protein -2 (BMP-2), and transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 antibodies.Results:
On the 15th day postsurgery, the specimens that received previous treatment with ALN demonstrated large vascular lumen and intense positivity to CD34 either concentrated in endothelium or cells spread among the reparative tissue. These results coincided with intense positivity for BMP-2+ cells and TGF-β1 that was concentrated in both cells and perivascular area. In contrast, the control group revealed scarce cells that exhibited CD34, BMP-2+, and the TGF-β1 was restricted for perivascular area on well-formed granulation tissue. These patterns of immunohistochemical result, especially found on the 15th day of analysis, seem to be responsible for the development of larger quantities of bone matrix in the specimens that receive ALN on the 60th day postsurgery.Conclusion:
These preliminary results showed that the prophylactic administration of low doses of ALN might be an alternative to craniofacial bone craniofacial bone repair because it increases the immunopositivity for TGF-β1 and consequently improves the CD34+ and BMP-2+ cells on reparative sites.