Large bone defects and fractures due to incidents such as severe trauma, birth malformations or bone destructive diseases are socio-economic burdens that will increase over the next decades. According to WHO, the total number of osteoporosis-related fractures in EU patients will rise to 4.5 million in 2025. Unfortunately, clinically used metal fixators are old-fashion solutions and their rigid design combined with open surgery and general anesthesia, make them poor solution for fractures on thin, fragile, inaccessible, and shattered bone. BoneFix will provide a novel class of bone regenerative adhesives that will allow for personalized regeneration and fixation of bone fractures. This will be accomplished by developing a novel library of biocompatible and biodegradable polymers, capable of binding to bone tissues.
Building from the bottom up, the concept involves three domains: a bone regeneration hydrogel that can be decorated by bone-healing molecules and cells, topological mechanical fixation patch, and a protective anti-bacterial hydrogel coating. The components will solidify “on fracture site” via High Energy Visible Light. The ultimate goal is to cement a new disruptive technology and a paradigm shift in clinical interventions of bone fractures in which BoneFix heals, fixates and protects complex fractures and defects making screws, plates and open surgery obsolete. The project is a partnership between Sweden, Norway, Switzerland, and Denmark.