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Degradation and Biocompatibility of AZ31 Magnesium Alloy Implants In Vitro and In Vivo: A Micro-Computed Tomography Study in Rats

Naohiko Kawamura, Yuya Nakao, Rina Ishikawa, Dai Tsuchida, Masahiro Iijima
Materials 2020 January 19, 13 (2)
31963840
In current orthodontic practice, miniscrew implants (MSIs) for anchorage and bone fixation plates (BFPs) for surgical orthodontic treatment are commonly used. MSIs and BFPs that are made of bioabsorbable material would avoid the need for removal surgery. We investigated the mechanical, degradation and osseointegration properties and the bone-implant interface strength of the AZ31 bioabsorbable magnesium alloy to assess its suitability for MSIs and BFPs. The mechanical properties of a Ti alloy (TiA), AZ31 Mg alloy (MgA), pure Mg and poly-L-lactic acid (PLA) were investigated using a nanoindentation test. Also, pH changes in the solution and degradation rates were determined using immersion tests. Three-dimensional, high-resolution, micro-computed tomography (CT) of implants in the rat femur was performed. Biomechanical push-out testing was conducted to calculate the maximum shear strength of the bone-implant interface. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), histological analysis and an evaluation of systemic inflammation were performed. MgA has mechanical properties similar to those of bone, and is suitable for implants. The degradation rate of MgA was significantly lower than that of Mg. MgA achieved a significantly higher bone-implant bond strength than TiA. Micro-CT revealed no significant differences in bone density or bone-implant contact between TiA and MgA. In conclusion, the AZ31 Mg alloy is suitable for both MSIs and BFPs.

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