Authors: Qiao, Wei; Xie, Huizhi; Fang, Jinghan; Shen, Jie; Li, Wenting; Shen, Danni; Wu, Jun; Wu, Shuilin; Liu, Xuanyong; Zheng, Yufeng; Cheung, Kenneth M. C.; Yeung, Kelvin W. K.
Issue: Biomaterials. 2021 Sep;276:121038
Macrophage has been gradually recognized as a central regulator in tissue regeneration, and the study of how macrophage mediates biomaterials-induced bone regeneration through immunomodulatory pathway becomes popular. However, the current understanding on the roles of different macrophage phenotypes in regulating bone tissue regeneration remains controversial. In this study, we demonstrate that sequential infiltration of heterogeneous phenotypes of macrophages triggered by bio-metal ions effectively facilitates bone healing in bone defect. Indeed, M1 macrophages promote the recruitment and early commitment of osteogenic and angiogenic progenitors, while M2 macrophages and osteoclasts support the deposition and mineralization of the bone matrix, as well as the maturation of blood vessels. Moreover, we have identified a group of bone biomaterial-related multinucleated cells that behave similarly to M2 macrophages with wound-healing features rather than participate in the bone resorption cascade similarly to osteoclasts. Our study shows how sequential activation of macrophage-osteoclast lineage contribute to a highly orchestrated immune response in the bone tissue microenvironment around biomaterials to regulate the complex biological process of bone healing. Therefore, we believe that the temporal activation pattern of heterogeneous macrophage phenotypes should be considered when the next generation of biomaterials for bone regeneration is engineered.