KLAUS GULDBRANDSEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY KLAUS GULDBRANDSEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bone bioceramic, for use in bone reconstruction, held by gloved hands. This is hydroxyapatite, a natural calcium phosphate mineral complex that is the crystalline component of bones and teeth. This synthetic bone mimics natural bone structure. Its porous structure allows a type of precursor (stem) cell (bone marrow stromal cells, BMSCs), to grow and develop into new bone tissue. The bioceramic can be shaped into implants that are treated with BMSCs (obtained from the patient's bone marrow), and grafted into the body to replace missing bone. Photographed in Faenza, Italy.
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