Medical and scientific professionals talk about the many benefits of using Silicon Nitride (Si3N4) technology in spinal and orthopedic reconstructive surgery, including excellent osteoconductive properties, high wear resistance, and greatly improved compatibility with all imaging modalities.
In the race to achieve interbody fusion, Material Matters. And no material fosters an environment for faster fusion like Silicon Nitride. Featuring the ability to achieve superior new bone growth and osteointegration, along with proven anti-infective properties and enhanced imaging attributes, Silicon Nitride outperforms PEEK and titanium.
OSTEOPROMOTIVE: DELIVERS ENHANCED OSTEOGENIC RESPONSE
Enhanced osteopromotion: The surface chemistry and nanostructure topography of Si3N4 provides an optimal environment for stimulation of osteoprogenitor cells to differentiate into osteoblasts.
Greater protein adsorption: Si3N4 demonstrates significantly greater protein adsorption (fibronectin, laminin and vitronectin) in comparison to PEEK and titanium. (1)
Greater new bone formation: Si3N4 implants demonstrate greater new bone formation at 3, 7, 14 and 90 days compared to PEEK and titanium in in vivo study; regenerated bone associated with Si3N4 implants is 2 to 3 times that of PEEK and titanium implants at 3 months after surgery.(2)
Increased osteointegration: Si3N4 implants demonstrate increased osteointegration at 3, 7, 14 and 90 days compared to PEEK and titanium in in vivo studies; percent of bone at Si3N4 implant interface is 2 to 6 times that of PEEK and titanium implants at 3 months after surgery.(2)
DEMONSTRATED ANTI-INFECTIVE PROPERTIES
Superior antibacterial function: Si3N4 inhibits biofilm formation and bacterial colonization. Si3N4 demonstrates significantly lower biofilm formation at 4, 24, 48 and 72 hours as compared to PEEK and titanium; live bacteria (S. epidermidis, S. aureus, P. aeruginosa, E. coli and Enterococcus) associated with Si3N4 implants are 8 to 30 times lower than PEEK and titanium.(1)
Demonstrated bacteriostatic agent: In in vivo studies, no infection is observed with bacteria-inoculated Si3N4 implants at 3 months, whereas both PEEK and titanium implants maintain a septic state. Si3N4 demonstrates this property even in the absence of antibiotics.(2)
EXCELLENT IMAGING PROPERTIES
- Compatible with all imaging modalities: Si3N4 implants are semi-radiolucent with clearly visible boundaries, and produce no distortion under MRI and no scattering under CT; this enables an exact view of the implant for precise intraoperative placement and postoperative fusion assessment.
1. Gorth DJ, Puckett S, Ercan B, Webster TJ, Rahaman M, Bal BS. Decreased bacteria activity on Si(3)N(4) surfaces compared with PEEK or titanium. Int J Nanomedicine. 2012;7:4829-4840.
2. Webster TJ, Patel AA, Rahaman MN, Sonny Bal B. Anti-infective and osteointegration properties of silicon nitride, poly(ether ether ketone), and titanium implants [published online ahead of print July 31, 2012]. Acta Biomater.