© 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd.Bioceramics for regenerative medicine applications should have the ability to promote adhesion, proliferation and differentiation of osteoblast and osteoclast cells. Osteogenic properties of the material are essential for rapid bone regeneration and new bone formation. The aim of this study was to develop a silicate-based ceramic, gehlenite (GLN, Ca2Al2SiO7), and characterise its physiochemical, biocompatibility and osteogenic properties. A pure GLN powder was synthesised by a facile reactive sintering method and compacted to disc-shaped specimens. The sintering behaviour and degradation of the GLN discs in various buffer solutions were fully characterised. The cytotoxicity of GLN was evaluated by direct and indirect methods. In the indirect method, primary human osteoblast cells (HOBs) were exposed to diluted extracts (100, 50, 25, 12.5 and 6.25 mg ml-1) of fine GLN particles in culture medium. The results showed that the extracts did not cause any cytotoxic effect on the HOBs with the number of cells increasing significantly from day 1 to day 7. GLN-supported HOB attachment and proliferation, and significantly enhanced osteogenic gene expression levels (Runx2, osteocalcin, osteopontin and bone sialoprotein) were compared with biphasic calcium phosphate groups (BCP, a mixture of hydroxyapatite (60wt.%) and ß-tricalcium phosphate(40wt.%)). We also demonstrated that in addition to supporting HOB attachment and proliferation, GLN promoted the formation of tartrate-acid resistance phosphatase (TRAP) positive multinucleated osteoclastic cells (OCs) derived from mouse bone marrow cells. Results also demonstrated the ability of GLN to support the polarisation of OCs, a prerequisite for their functional resorptive activity which is mainly influenced by the composition and degradability of biomaterials. Overall, the developed GLN is a prospective candidate to be used in bone regeneration applications due its effective osteogenic properties and biocompatibility.