Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Medical Biophysics


David W. Holdsworth, Ph.D


It remains unknown whether bone grafting influences dural osteogenesis following cranial reconstruction. The purpose o f this study is to 1) develop a model to study non-vascularized and vascularized calvarial grafts; and 2) compare effects o f bone graft vascularity on calvarial healing.

Thirty-six rats were divided into Control and Experimental (EXP) groups. Parietal defects were left empty on one side. Contralateral defects in Control, EXP1, and EXP2 were partially filled with native parietal bone (sham), non-vascularized, and vascularized bone grafts, respectively. Healing parameters were measured from serial micro-CT scans.

Greater bone production resulted in Control and EXP2 versus EXP1 at later stages. Healing progressed through bone islands within Control and EXP2 versus marginal healing in EXP1.

An animal model has been established to study non-vascularized and vascularized calvarial bone grafts. Non-vascularized bone grafts may inhibit dural osteogenesis. Greater understanding o f vascular mechanisms underlying calvarial healing may have implications for cranial reconstruction.



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