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Brookhaven Lab and BioSET patent a synthetic peptide that enhances bone growth
Date:2/19/2009

UPTON, NY Brookhaven Science Associates, the company that operates and manages the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), and Biosurface Engineering Technologies, Inc. (BioSET), have been issued a U.S. patent on a synthetic peptide, called B2A.

"About 250,000 Americans undergo lumbar spine fusion surgeries each year to treat lower back pain," said Tom Rouche, BioSET President and CEO. "We have developed a novel combination medical device, called AMPLEX, that incorporates B2A osteo-inductive growth factor with an ultra-high grade ceramic bone substitute for use in this type of surgery. Preclinical studies have found that it is a safe and highly effective."

B2A enhances the effects of a tissue growth factor known as bone morphogenetic protein 2, or BMP-2. BMPs are a family of proteins in the human body responsible for the proliferation, repair and differentiation of cells in many tissues, including bone.

Brookhaven Lab scientist Louis Pea developed B2A with BioSET, and he performed the initial studies at Brookhaven. "I became interested in bone growth factors after NASA built a radiation research facility at Brookhaven," Pea said. "Weightlessness in space causes bone loss, and cosmic radiation can cause damage to cells, so I thought I might be able to study the interaction of the two. In setting up for that, I developed B2A and couldn't ignore its biomedical applications, so I focused on it instead. The ability to shift direction and follow promising leads is important in science, and I've had the freedom to do that at Brookhaven. I am gratified that BioSET has been able to take the B2A technology to a new level of clinical testing."

In recent preclinical studies, University of Iowa researchers used a rabbit model to evaluate AMPLEX spine fusion. They found that it enhanced the fusion, compared to a conventional surgical method that uses the rabbit's own pelvic bone to form the bone graft. Also, a t
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Contact: Diane Greenberg
greenb@bnl.gov
631-344-2347
DOE/Brookhaven National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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