WIREs Systems Biology & Medicine vol:7 issue:4 pages:183-194
Although the field of bone regeneration has experienced great advancements in the last decades, integrating all the relevant, patient‐specific information into a personalized diagnosis and optimal treatment remains a challenging task due to the large number of variables that affect bone regeneration. Computational models have the potential to cope with this complexity and to improve the fundamental understanding of the bone regeneration processes as well as to predict and optimize the patient‐specific treatment strategies. However, the current use of computational models in daily orthopedic practice is very limited or inexistent. We have identified three key hurdles that limit the translation of computational models of bone regeneration from bench to bed side. First, there exists a clear mismatch between the scope of the existing and the clinically required models. Second, most computational models are confronted with limited quantitative information of insufficient quality thereby hampering the determination of patient‐specific parameter values. Third, current computational models are only corroborated with animal models, whereas a thorough (retrospective and prospective) assessment of the computational model will be crucial to convince the health care providers of the capabilities thereof. These challenges must be addressed so that computational models of bone regeneration can reach their true potential, resulting in the advancement of individualized care and reduction of the associated health care costs.