The purpose of this investigation was to study the effects of recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein-2 (rhBMP-2) on bone formation of mandibular distraction osteogenesis. Six skeletally mature sheep underwent 10 mm of bilateral mandibular distraction osteogenesis via a custom-made distractor. Three micrograms of rhBMP-2 with a collagen carrier was implanted in the osteotomy site of one side of the mandible during the osteotomy phase. The contralateral side was used as the control group, and no material was implanted into the distracted area. At 10 days after the end of distraction, all animals were killed, and the distracted calluses were harvested for radiologic and histologic analysis. New bone was generated in the distracted zone in all groups. Histologic and radiologic examination showed that the new bone formation was greater in the rhBMP-2 group than in the control group. Quantitative computed tomography evaluation, however, did not demonstrate a significantly different mean bone density of the regenerates between the 2 groups. The results indicate that application of a rhBMP-2/collagen implant during the osteotomy phase of distraction osteogenesis increased bone formation but did not have a significant effect on bone density of the regenerates.