Comparison of Autograft with Other Materials

Table prepared by David L. Nelson, MD
Last updated: 11/21/99
Osteoinduction: induces the formation of new bone by means of cytokines, such as BMP, which are proteins that influence adjacent cells to transform into osteoblasts.
Osteoconduction: provides a scaffold for the cells to move into the area and create new bone.
Osteogenesis: living cells which are or transform into osteoblasts and create new bone.
  Material   Examples   Advantage   Disadvantage

 autograft bone


  • cortical,
  • cancellous
  • corticocancellous

  • no autoimmune incompatibility
  • best for osteoinduction, osteoconduction and osteogenesis
  • possibly decreased cost
  • donor site morbidity
  • increased operative time
  • possibly increased cost
 allograft bone
  • frozen
  • freeze dried
  • demineralized
  • no donor site morbidity
  • potential for osteoconduction and/or osteoinduction, varies with processing techniques used
  • immunogenic
  • structurally weaker
  • poorer inductive, conductive properties
  • not osteogenic
 matrix proteins
  • Grafton
  • Dynagraft
  •  osteoinductive
  • immunogenic
  • no structural properties
  • most not osteoconductive
  • not osteogenic
 synthetic substitutes
  •  mineral


  • Interpore ProOsteon (from coral)
  • Wright OsteoSet
  • osteoconductive


  • variable strength
  • remodeled poorly
  • not osteoinductive
  • not osteogenic
  •  mineral cements
  • Norian SRS
  • Stryker/Howmedica BoneSource
  • Etex a BSM
  • some structructural strength
  • Norian is currently available in US but has only a limited release; available in Europe; others available in Europe and elsewhere
  • not PMMA!
  • collapses without support
  • not all yet available in US, but are available in Europe and elsewhere
  •  mineral + collagen
  •  Zimmer Collagraft
  • osteoconductive
  • no structural stength
  •  mineral + collagen +cytokine (bone growth factor)
  •  in development (PMA, IDE)
  • osteoconductive
  • osteoinductive
  • not yet available
  •  collagen +cytokine (bone growth factor)
  • in development (PMA, IDE)
  • (Novos, with OP-1)
  • osteoconductive
  • osteoinductive
  • not yet available

All of the above would be osteogenic when mixed with bone graft, but not all can be
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