Bone morphogenetic protein is a naturally occurring protein in your body that can be used as a bone graft substitute. These isolated proteins appear in specific cells, and they play a huge role in forming new cartilage and bone. In particular, they are essential during embryonic development and early skeletal formation. In later life, these proteins can also be used in oral surgery and dentistry.
If a bone graft is needed, these proteins can be placed into the necessary area of your mouth. Typically, the proteins are soaked into a collagen sponge. Collagen is another type of protein in your body. Found in muscles, bones, blood vessels, and tendons as well as other parts, this protein replaces dead skin cells and provides strength and elasticity to all of these areas of the body.
Over time, the collagen sponge is reabsorbed into the body. In other words, it slowly disappears. As this happens, the bone morphogenetic protein is slowly released and that stimulates the healing process and leads to additional bone growth. This approach gives your body the proteins that it needs in a slow consistent dosage in a localized spot.
When compared to a traditional bone graft, using bone morphogenetic protein offers a lot of advantages. Most importantly, the surgeon doesn’t have to remove bone from any other parts of your body. That allows you to avoid a potentially painful procedure and the complications that may accompany that procedure. Additionally, your body only has to heal one area. It doesn’t have to simultaneously heal the implant site and the place from where the graft was taken.