World first: a child’s tibia healed thanks to a 3D bone graft from Novadip technology



This is a world first in the field of orthopaedic surgery: surgeons at Cliniques universitaires de Saint-Luc repaired the tibia bone of a 5-year-old child using a bone graft implant, a technology developed by the UCLouvain spin-off Novadip Biosciences.

The child had congenital nonunion of the tibia, a rare and disabling disease. He was born with a broken leg. His diseased bone did not have the capacity to heal like normal bone. He was no longer able to walk unless it was difficult with a brace. Most of the time it ends with an amputation and the fitting of a prosthesis.

Our client Novadip has developed a revolutionary process for reconstructing bones from stem cells drawn from the patient’s fat. This autologous technology (the subject is his own donor) consists in taking a little adipose tissue from the abdomen, which is then transformed into a kind of bone plasticine reinjected into recalcitrant fractures.

The orthopaedic surgeons at Saint-Luc used this innovative technique to graft the young patient with a 3D tissue implant of more than 18 cm³. Two years later, the tibia bone is reconstructed and consolidated. The young patient is able to walk and go to school.

According to UCLouvain, these results look very promising for the treatment of rare paediatric orthopaedic disorders.

Sources: L’Echo (2020), RTBF (2020), UCLouvain (2020)

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