Development of novel bioactivation techniques for ceramic surfaces to improve and accelerate the osseointegration of medical implants

The aim of the CeramActive project is to develop novel bioactivation techniques for high-performance ceramics to accelerate and improve their osseointegration. As such, it is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as a part of its “VIP – Validation of the Innovation Potential of Scientific Research” program. With the new approaches currently in development, the overall lifetime of a ceramic implant could be extended as well as expensive and burdening revisions avoided.

The Dental Materials and Biomaterial Research group has already shown an improvement of the cellular response towards a specially tailored ceramic surface in terms of accumulation and growth. Here, a multi-step approach is used to bind specific biomolecules onto the individually treated surface to create an improved cell-ceramic interface where the surrounding cells could easily attach and differentiate. One of the main research focuses of the CeramActive project is now to optimize and expand the already existing coating technology as well as to investigate potential areas of application and the resulting demands on this technology. A successful validation of this technology would introduce a novel class of biologically activated high-performance ceramics into the medical implant market and significantly increase the implants’ lifetime and as a result the patient’s quality of life. Potential applications are found in orthopedics, dentistry, and maxillofacial and trauma surgery.