Stem cells, growth factors and scaffolds in craniofacial regenerative medicine

Viktor Tollemar, Zach J. Collier, Maryam K. Mohammed, Michael J. Lee, Guillermo A. Ameer, Russell R. Reid*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

89 Scopus citations


Current reconstructive approaches to large craniofacial skeletal defects are often complicated and challenging. Critical-sized defects are unable to heal via natural regenerative processes and require surgical intervention, traditionally involving autologous bone (mainly in the form of nonvascularized grafts) or alloplasts. Autologous bone grafts remain the gold standard of care in spite of the associated risk of donor site morbidity. Tissue engineering approaches represent a promising alternative that would serve to facilitate bone regeneration even in large craniofacial skeletal defects. This strategy has been tested in a myriad of iterations by utilizing a variety of osteoconductive scaffold materials, osteoblastic stem cells, as well as osteoinductive growth factors and small molecules. One of the major challenges facing tissue engineers is creating a scaffold fulfilling the properties necessary for controlled bone regeneration. These properties include osteoconduction, osteoinduction, biocompatibility, biodegradability, vascularization, and progenitor cell retention. This review will provide an overview of how optimization of the aforementioned scaffold parameters facilitates bone regenerative capabilities as well as a discussion of common osteoconductive scaffold materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)56-71
Number of pages16
JournalGenes and Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Bone regeneration
  • Craniofacial defects
  • Osteogenesis
  • Regenerative medicine
  • Scaffolds
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Stem cells, growth factors and scaffolds in craniofacial regenerative medicine'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this