An experimental design to study adipocyte stem cells for reconstruction of calvarial defects

Mary E. Bohnenblust, Megan B. Steigelman, Qian Wang, John A. Walker, Howard T. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Autogenous osteogenic differentiated rat adipose stromal cells (ASCs) were used to repopulate cadaveric processed bone in a critical calvarial defect model to improve bone healing as compared with the standard treatment of cadaveric bone implantation alone. Forty-two skeletally mature Sprague-Dawley rats were randomized to 5 groups including bone graft only, bone/osteogenic differentiated ASCs, fibrin glue/osteogenic differentiated ASCs, and bone/fibrin glue/osteogenic differentiated ASCs; 2 animal calvarias were left empty. Adipose stromal cells were isolated from the inguinal fat pad of rats and differentiated into osteogenic cells, verified using von Kossa and alkaline phosphatase staining, and osteocalcin immunohistochemistry. These cells were added to sterilized, 8-mm cadaveric bone graft disks and placed back into calvarial defect for 6 weeks. The rat calvarias then underwent bone density analysis and histology. Intact cells were observed in the bone graft of the bone/osteogenic differentiated ASC group only. Islands of bone were seen in the bone-graft-only group, the bone/osteogenic differentiated ASC group, and the bone/fibrin/osteogenic differentiated ASC group. The bone-graft-only group and bone/osteogenic differentiated ASC group were similar in bone mineral density (1397 ± 184.5 vs 1365 ± 160.4). The bone/fibrin/osteogenic differentiated ASC group density was less than the bone and bone/osteogenic differentiated ASC groups at 835.2 ± 319.5 (P < 0.001). Allograft bone scaffolds with autogenous osteogenic differentiated ASCs showed cellularity within the bone grafts and had larger bone islands. The presence of osteogenic differentiated ASCs did not increase overall bone density compared with bone graft only.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)340-346
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Craniofacial Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2009


  • Adipocyte stem cells
  • Adipocytes
  • Osteogenic differentiation
  • Rat calvarial defect
  • Tissue culture
  • Tissue reconstruction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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