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Lecture Marc Hendriks


12 October 2011 FWN-Building 5115.0013, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG, Groningen
Speaker: Dr. Marc Hendriks
Affiliation: RD&T Director, DSM Biomedical, Geleen
Title: Three Generations of Biomaterials. Increasing Importance of 'BIO'.
Date: Wed Oct 12, 2011
Start: 14.00
Location: FWN-Building 5115.0013
Host: T.T.M. Palstra
Telephone: +31 50 363 4419


In their seminal 2002 paper Hench and Polak described how in the last few decades biomaterials have evolved to today’s 3rd generation biomaterials ( Hench L.L., Polak J.M. 2002. Science, 295: 1014-1017 ) . Notably, Hench and Polak described how i n the 1960s and 1970s the first generation of materials was brought to bear for use inside the human body with the typical characteristic of having to achieve a suitable combination of physico-mechanical properties to match those of the replaced tissue with a minimal toxic response in the host.

Subsequently, second generation biomedical materials shifted in emphasis to bioactive components that elicit a controlled action and reaction in the physiological environment. This was achieved either by improvements to or different choice of material or by surface modification technologies (e.g., coatings). Another second generation advance was the development of resorbable biomaterials that exhibit controlled breakdown and resorption, with the foreign material ultimately being replaced by regenerating tissues thus leading to no discernible difference between implant site and host tissue.

Clinical success of first and second generation biomedical materials has been and will continue to be instrumental in addressing the medical needs of an aging population. However, regrettably still a third to half of long-term medical implants based on these materials fail within 10 to 25 years, thus requiring patients to undergo replacement or revision surgery. Clearly this leaves room for improvement, and while undisputedly relevant improvements to first- and second-generation biomaterials will continue to be attained, it shall be understood that in many cases – not all – these merely will yield incremental advances to clinical outcome, as ultimately these materials, and the implants fabricated from them, do represent a compromise when compared to the performance of living tissue.

That being said, as exemplified in Hench and Polak’s paper third-generation biomaterials will comprising the ability of the material to stimulate specific cellular responses at the molecular level. The use of these tailored biomaterials will enable either direct therapeutic use (Axelsson J., et al. 2010. ASAIO J. 56(1): 48-51), or the design of novel Regenerative Medicine products with (Maréchal M., et al. 2008. J Periodontol. 79(5): 896-904) or without (Mata A., et al. 2010. Biomaterials. 31(23): 6004-6012) combination with biologically active compounds.

Reflecting on the afore-alluded to conceptual model this paper will discuss our currently ongoing research and development efforts aimed at establishing a portfolio of 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation biomedical materials.


Last modified:22 October 2012 2.30 p.m.