A concept of space provision to support skeletal repair has long been used in orthopedic and oral maxillofacial reconstructive therapy. More recently, this concept has been studied and adapted to periodontal reconstructive therapy. Other studies have demonstrated that skeletal tissues represent a significant reservoir of growth factors, including bone morphogenetic proteins. Such factors have been shown to stimulate skeletal repair in preclinical models and in clinical defects. We herein review studies using the critical size supraalveolar periodontal defect model in which clinically meaningful periodontal regeneration was achieved following reconstructive surgery, including space provision by reinforced expanded polytetrafluoroethylene membranes or including surgical implantation of recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein-2. Potential mechanisms involved in observed regeneration are discussed.
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