Staphylococcus aureus: An Experimental Study in RatsPeptidoglycan Impairs Fracture Healing: An Experimental Study in Rats

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Stahylococcus aureus is the common organism causing musculoskeletal infectons. Stahylococcus aureus peptidoglycan (SaPG) has been identified to increase the acute inflammatory response to wounding, increase reparative granulation tissue, and improve healing. The healing of bone fractures is a balanced process of granulation tissue that is calcified to obtain increasing stability. By increasing reparative collagen accumulation, however, SaPG may induce a shift towards immature fibrous callus production. Therefore, it was our hypothesis that SaPG would impair bone healing after fracture. In three groups, each of nine rats, a middiaphyseal osteotomy/fracture of the femoral bone was performed and then nailed. In one group of animals, SaPG was applied locally at the fracture site, and in another group SaPG was applied intraperitoneally (systemically). Control littermate received saline. The animals were sacrificed after 6 weeks, and the mechanical characteristics of the healing osteotomies were evaluated. We found that application of SaPG locally induced a hypertrophic and immature callus as evaluated by callus production, by bone mineral content and density, and by bending moment and rigidity. In the rats given SaPG intraperitoneally, bone healing went uneventful compared to the control rats. Collectively, these data show that SaPG induces an alteration in the normal bone healing response towards a less calcified callus production. © 2006 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 25:262–266, 2007

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