There is an urgent need to develop new approaches to treat conditions as- ciated with the aging global population. The surgeon’s approach to many of these problems could be described as having evolved through three stages: Removal: Traditionally, diseased or badly damaged tissues and structures might simply be removed. This was appropriate for limbs and non-essential organs, but could not be applied to structures that were critical to sustain life. An additional problem was the creation of disability or physical deformity that in turn could lead to further complications. Replacement: In an effort to treat wider clinical problems, or to overcome the limitations of amputation, surgeons turned to the use of implanted materials and medical devices that could replace the functions of biological structures. This field developed rapidly in the 1960s and 1970s, with heart valve and total joint replacement becoming common. The term “biomaterial” was used increasingly to describe the materials used in these operations, and the study of biomaterials became one of the first truly interdisciplinary research fields. Today, biomaterials are employed in many millions of clinical procedures each year and they have become the mainstay of a very successful industry.