Morphology and mechanical behavior of TTCP-derived calcium phosphate cement subcutaneously implanted in rats

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A pre-hardened, TTCP-derived CPC was immersed in Hanks' solution as well as subcutaneously implanted into abdomen of rats. The implant-soft tissue interfacial morphology was examined and properties of the CPC were evaluated and compared under in vitro and in vivo conditions. The results indicate that the surface of immersed samples appeared rougher and more porous than that of implanted samples and was covered with a layer of fine apatite crystals. The CPC samples implanted for 4 weeks or longer were surrounded by a layer of fibrous tissue, which was further surrounded by a soft tissue capsule comprising numerous fat cells. The soft tissue capsule had a non-uniform distribution in thickness, which increased most significantly between 4 weeks and 12 weeks after implantation. None of polymorphic cells, osteoblast cells or bone cells adjacent to the implant were observed. The majority of original TTCP powder was transformed into apatite after 1 day of either immersion in Hanks' solution or implantation. The average porosity values of samples immersed in Hanks' solution for 4 weeks or longer were significantly larger than those immersed for 1 day or 1 week. The porosity values of samples implanted for different times were not significantly different. The DTS values of Hanks' solution-immersed samples largely decreased after a few weeks of immersion. The implanted samples maintained their strengths throughout the study.

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