Statins are known to stimulate osteoblast activity and bone formation. This study examines whether local application of fluvastatin enhances osteogenesis around titanium implants in vivo. Ten-week-old rats received a vehicle gel (propylene glycol alginate (PGA)) or PGA containing fluvastatin (3, 15, 75 or 300 μg) in their tibiae just before insertion of the implants. For both histological and histomorphometric evaluations undecalcified ground sections were obtained and the bone-implant contact (BIC), peri-implant osteoid volume and mineralized bone volume (MBV) were calculated after 1, 2 and 4 weeks. Using the same models mechanical push-in tests were also performed to evaluate the implant fixation strength. After 1 week the MBV and push-in strength were significantly lower in the 300 μg fluvastatin-treated group than in the other groups (P < 0.01). At 2 weeks, however, the BIC and MBV were both significantly higher in the 75 μg fluvastatin-treated group than in the non-fluvastatin-treated groups (P < 0.01). Similar tendencies were observed at week 4. Furthermore, the data showed a good correlation between the MBV and the push-in strength. These results demonstrate positive effects of locally applied fluvastatin on the bone around titanium implants and suggest that this improvement in osseointegration may be attributed to calcification of the peri-implant bone.
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