Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Barbara D. Boyan

Second Advisor

Zvi Schwartz

Third Advisor

Henry J. Donahue

Fourth Advisor

Ibrahim Guven

Fifth Advisor

Jolene J. Windle


In cases of compromised bone remodeling like osteoporosis, insufficient osseointegration occurs and results in implant failure. Implant retention relies on proper secondary fixation, which is developed during bone remodeling. This process is disrupted in metastatic bone diseases like osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is characterized low bone mass and bone strength resulting from either accelerated osteoclast-mediated bone resorption or impaired osteoblast-mediated bone formation. These two processes are not independent phenomena. In fact, osteoporosis can be viewed as a breakdown of the cellular communication connecting bone resorption to bone formation. Because bone remodeling occurs at temporally generated specific anatomical sites and at different times, local regulators that control cross-talk among the cells of the BRU are important. Previous studies show Ti implant surface characteristics like roughness, hydrophilicity, and chemistry influence the osteoblastic differentiation of human MSCs and maturation of OBs. Furthermore, microstructured Ti surfaces modulate the production of factors shown to be important in the reciprocal communication necessary for the maintenance of healthy bone remodeling. Semaphorin signaling proteins are known to couple the communication of osteoblasts to osteoclasts and are capable of stimulating bone formation or bone resorption depending on certain cues. Implant surface properties can be optimized to exploit these effects to favor rapid osseointegration in patients with osteoporosis.


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