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Degradable metallic mini-plate and screw system for craniofacial osteosynthesis

99 months
Approved budget:
Associate Professor Mark Staiger
Health issue:
Human genetics and inherited/congenital conditions
Proposal type:
Lay summary
Metal plates/screws that break down safely in the body would be extremely useful in treating craniofacial fractures that place a serious burden on society due to severe morbidity/mortality, facial disfigurement, loss of function and financial cost. Benefits of this proposal are: (i) improvement of surgical management of craniofacial fractures; (ii) lowered patient management costs. We hypothesize that a degradable magnesium mini-plate/screw system will improve outcomes of fixation/immobilisation in craniofacial fractures, representing a paradigm shift in current methodology. This innovative approach will reduce patient recovery time by enhancing new bone formation and reduce cost by eliminating the need for secondary surgical implant removal. Our approach will eliminate current problems with (i) permanent devices (including facial-growth restriction, bone resorption due to stress shielding, infection, extrusion and radio-opaqueness interfering with radiological evaluation and radiation therapy); and (ii) resorbable polymer devices (including physical bulkiness, foreign-body reactions, acidic by-products, poor osteoconductivity, bone osteolysis).