Bioengineering, and notably tissue engineering, provides customised medicine a fresh viewpoint. Blood transfusions, bone marrow transplants, and autologous chondrocyte implantation to re-grow cartilage are just a few examples of how cells and treatments are being used to help the body repair itself. Click here to find more about QC Kinetix (Asheville) – Asheville Regenerative Medicine are here
Over 2000 clinical studies using cell treatments, such as stem cells for ischemic heart areas, neural precursor cells for Parkinson’s illness, and oligodendrocytes derived from embryonic stem cells to cure spinal cord damage, have been paved by these techniques.
The best way to transplant these cells is to figure out what the optimal method is. Cell-based treatment is used to treat osteoarthritis of the knee, where cartilage and subchondral bone loss results in less fibro cartilage healing than the mechanical qualities of articular cartilage. Over 250,000 knee replacements are performed each year, with the majority of patients developing acute degenerative joint disease. Because the cells have a propensity to produce fibro cartilage and lose their round shape, injecting a suspension of autologous cultured chondrocytes into the issue location will not be useful. The best technique to treat osteoarthritis of the knee is to implant chondrocytes in the cartilaginous matrix, which wears away like cartilage.
When chondrocytes are encased in gels, their rounded form is preserved, and the characteristics of the gels may be adjusted to allow tissue regeneration. The mesh must be tiny enough to retain the cells in place while yet being open enough to allow water and nutrients to pass through. Similarly, the gel structure must breakdown at the proper rate so that the secreted extracellular matrix is not confined to the region around each chondrocyte.
Engineered cartilage tissue may mimic the structural properties of natural cartilage to the point that cell orientation and regenerated cartilage resemble genuine cartilage. The cells that are encased in this kind of matrix have the ability to move to and from the surface of the cartilage.
One of the most important issues raised by cell-based treatment is how to maximise the usefulness of cells given to a passive or tolerant environment, where there is context for the kind of cell needed but few biological signals are generated to promote normal cell activity.
Finally, bioengineers envision a material system in which embedded cells send a signal that causes deeper cells to build bone and surface cells to build cartilage.