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Bioactively Coated Implants Get Cats Back on Their Feet

By Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) | March 20, 2017

The coatings based on calcium phosphate and other compounds make implants more similar to human bone.

Veterinaries successfully apply Tomsk Polytechnic University’s developments for implantology. Now titanium implants with bioactive coatings are already used to treat pets in BEST vet clinic, Novosibirsk, Russia. Tomas and Kutuzov the cats were the first patients to apply the Tomsk development.
 
A scientific team led by associate professor Sergey Tverdokhlebov, the TPU Department of Experimental Physics, is engaged in the property modification of materials used in implant manufacturing. Tomas and Kutuzov the cats were the first patients to test the innovation.
 
“One cat was missing a front foot, another—a back foot. Their owners addressed the clinic and doctors suggested implants with our coatings. The owners agreed and the pets were operated. Now the two are under observation and veterinaries systematically do them radiograph and tomography. Results show the implants have taken roots well. According to the doctors the four-leg patients feel themselves with artificial feet as comfortable as with their native ones,” said Sergey Tverdokhlebov.
 
The veterinaries also set implants to a cat missing two back feet. Now the cat walks confident along the clinic instead of using a wheelchair.
 
The polytechnicers have produced about 40 titanium implants with bioactive coatings. The coatings based on calcium phosphate and other compounds make implants more similar to human bone. They are more seldom rejected by the body, take roots better and speed up regeneration processes.


Pet implant samples

 
The TPU scientists use the concept of hybrid coatings which implies various application methods. Thus, they tailor structure and porosity in bioactive coatings for an individual patient.
 
For instance, the implants for the BEST clinic were produced with an electrochemical method of bioactive coating application at an original TPU micro-arc oxidation unit.
 
The implants with bioactive coatings of the Tverdokhlebov’s team are tested in Russia and abroad. Some of them are already used in the Federal Institution of the Russian Ilizarov Scientific Centre “Restorative Traumatology and Orthopaedics,” a world-wide famous orthopedic center in Kurgan, Russia.
 
The scientific team led by Sergey Tverdokhlebov is an international collaboration of about 30 scientists from Russia, Australia, Germany, UK and other countries. They are polytechnicers and academicians, scientists from other universities and scientific organizations—physicists, chemists, medical scientists, clinicians, biologists, as well as other specialists.
 
The development of new materials and coatings is conducted by the TPU scientists and was funded by the Russian Science Foundation, the grant № 16-15-00176
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