Differential response of human osteoblast-like cells to commercially pure (cp) titanium grades 1 and 4

M. Ahmad, D. Gawronski, J. Blum, J. Goldberg, G. Gronowicz

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66 Scopus citations


Common dental implants are made of different grades of commercially pure titanium (cpTi) that are more than 99% similar in chemical composition. The objective of this in vitro study was to determine if human osteoblast-like cells, Saos-2, would respond differently when plated on disks of cpTi Grade 1 and Grade 4. Glass disks served as controls. In spite of identical preparation, the two grades of cpTi acquired different surface topographies, as illustrated by scanning electron micrographs and profilometry. Cell responses, such as adhesion, morphology, and collagen synthesis also differed on the two grades of cpTi. Between 4 and 24 h, the rate of cell attachment to Grade 1 differed significantly compared to cell attachment to Grade 4 and to glass. Rhodamine phalloidin fluorescence microscopy showed variations in the actin-based cytoskeleton between grades 1 and 4 cpTi in cell spreading, shape, and the organization of stress fibers. Immunofluorescent staining showed differential expression of vinculin, a focal adhesion protein, on the substrates. At 24 h, the percent of collagen synthesized was significantly more on Grade 1 than on Grade 4 and on glass. Alkaline phosphatase activity was similar on all substrates. The calcium content was significantly higher on Grade 1 than on Grade 4 and on glass at 24 h and at 4 weeks. Thus, commonly used cpTi induced differential morphologic and phenotypic changes in human osteoblast-like cells depending on the grade of the material.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-131
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1999


  • Adhesion
  • Implants
  • Osteoblasts
  • Surfaces
  • Titanium

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