Biomaterials Derived from Beer-brewing Waste May Have Use in Bone Regeneration

Using wastes generated by the brewing of beer, researchers have developed biocompatible materials that may be used to create scaffolds upon which bone may regenerate, for potential application in implant coatings or as a substitute for synthetic bone grafts.

How does it work?

• Bagasse (waste material obtained from the beer brewing process) contains the main chemical components found in bones:
  phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, silica
• Analysis of treated bagasse reveals the presence of interconnected pores sized between 50 and 500 microns—similar to the
  porosity of cancellous bone, which could support vascularization following implantation

Why is this significant?

• Could provide an alternative to synthetic materials, or matrices sourced from sheep bones
• Bagasse is a plentiful resource, less costly than conventional scaffolds and preparation is less harmful to the environment

What happens next?

• Initial analysis using cell cultures has confirmed that the materials are biocompatible
• Researchers are analyzing how the materials proliferate and engage in collagen synthesis/mineralization of the matrix

Beer brewing waste could help bone regeneration, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, June 9, 2014,
Preparation, characterization and in vitro osteoblast growth of waste-derived biomaterials, RSC Advances Issue 25, 2014, Royal Society of Chemistry,
See also: Beer Waste Solves More Problems Than You'd Think, Melissa Pandika for Ozy, June 12, 2014,