Bone-graft Substitute Biomaterials

Hailed as one of the most important feats of British engineering in the last 50 years, researchers at Queen Mary have developed a range of synthetic bone graft materials now being used to treat hundreds of thousands of patients across the Globe.

Research undertaken by Bioengineers, Biomaterial Scientists and Chemists at Queen Mary has resulted in the development of a raft of bioactive synthetic bone graft substitute (sBGS) materials, now in global clinical use including Actifuse™ and Inductigraft™ (known as AltaPore™ in the USA).  These bioactive sBGS have been clinically proven to support the regeneration of new bone without patients having to undergo sometimes risky additional surgery to harvest donor tissue.

The success of this world-leading applied research resulted in the Queen Mary spin-out company, ApaTech™ being acquired in 2010 by Baxter for $330M in recognition of its position as a global leader in the provision of superior sBGS technologies. 

These sBGS have now been used to treat hundreds’s of thousands of patients in over 30 countries. It is estimated that they are currently used in around 20,000 procedures per year and generate an annual turnover in the region of $14M.

In 2019 the outstanding engineering achievements that underpinned the founding of ApaTech™ and the development of Actifuse™, Inductigraft™ and AltaPore™ were celebrated as one of the six Royal Mail stamps issued commemorating British Engineering.

Prof Karin Hing has been at the forefront of this hugely succeful and impact bioengineering research for the past 25 years.