Canine bone response to tyrosine-derived polycarbonates and poly(L-lactic acid)

Jack Choueka, Jose L. Charvet, Kenneth J. Koval, Harold Alexander, Kenneth S. James, Kimberly A. Hooper, Joachim Kohn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

80 Scopus citations


Tyrosine-derived polycarbonates are a new class of degradable polymers developed for orthopedic applications. In this study the long-term (48 week) in vivo degradation kinetics and host bone response to poly(DTE carbonate) and poly(DTH carbonate) were investigated using a canine bone chamber model. Poly(L-lactic acid) (PLA) served as a control material. Two chambers of each test material were retrieved at 6-, 12-, 24-, and 48-week time points. Tyrosine-derived polycarbonates were found to exhibit degradation kinetics comparable to PLA. Each test material lost approximately 50% of its initial molecular weight (Mω) over the 48-week test period. Poly(DTE carbonate) and poly(DTH carbonate) test chambers were characterized by sustained bone ingrowth throughout the 48 weeks. In contrast, bone ingrowth into the PLA chambers peaked at 24 weeks and dropped by half at the 48-week time point. A fibrous tissue layer was found surrounding the PLA implants at all time points. This fibrous tissue layer was notably absent at the interface between bone and the tyrosine-derived polycarbonates. Histologic sections revealed intimate contact between bone and tyrosine-derived polycarbonates. From a degradation-biocompatibility perspective, the tyrosine-derived polycarbonates appear to be comparable, if not superior, to PLA in this canine bone chamber model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-41
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 1 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering

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