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A Scaffoldless Approach for Tissue Engineering of Articular Cartilage.

Organization:Rice University, TX, US
I.P. Brief:This technology allows for the in vitro production of cartilage structures large enough to be used for the surgical treatment of traumatic and osteoarthritic lesions without the use of a scaffold.
Summary of I.P.:Using biologically engineered materials to induce the body to replace burned skin, worn-out joints or injured body parts offers the promise of longer, healthier lives. Scaffold-guided tissue regeneration involves seeding highly porous biodegradable scaffolds with donor cells and/or growth factors, then culturing and implanting the scaffolds to induce and direct the growth of new tissue. The goal is for the cells to attach to the scaffold, then replicate, differentiate, and organize into normal healthy tissue as the scaffold degrades. In our system, a cell suspension is directly introduced onto hydrogel-coated wells. The chondrocytes pack into an aggregate and are cultured in these wells. The hydrogel coating prevents the chondrocytes from attaching to the bottom of the wells. By coating the wells with a hydrogel, the chondrocytes remain round and differentiated. Nutrients are also allowed to diffuse into the bottom of the constructs from the hydrogel. In the first 7 weeks after seeding, the constructs grow to more than 10 mm in diameter and 1.0 mm in thickness when flattened, Histological evaluation shows collagen and glycosaminoglycans throughout the engineered construct, and mechanical testing yields an aggregate modulus of 50 kPa, suggesting an impressive structural integrity.
Keywords:cartilage, arthritis, tissue engineering, bone, orthopedics, osteoarthritis, meniscus
Primary Industry:Health & Medical Devices
Specific Market:orthopedics tissue regeneration
Market Size:50 million
State of the Art:self-transplant
Figures of Merit:na
Tech.  Obstacles:None
Market Obstacles:None
Research Team:na


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