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A novel allogeneic acellular matrix scaffold for porcine cartilage regeneration.

BMC Biotechnology 2023 September 15
BACKGROUND: Cartilage defects are common sports injuries without significant treatment. Articular cartilage with inferior regenerative potential resulted in the poor formation of hyaline cartilage in defects. Acellular matrix scaffolds provide a microenvironment and biochemical properties similar to those of native tissues and are widely used for tissue regeneration. Therefore, we aimed to design a novel acellular cartilage matrix scaffold (ACS) for cartilage regeneration and hyaline-like cartilage formation.

METHODS: Four types of cartilage injury models, including full-thickness cartilage defects (6.5 and 8.5 mm in diameter and 2.5 mm in depth) and osteochondral defects (6.5 and 8.5 mm in diameter and 5 mm in depth), were constructed in the trochlear groove of the right femurs of pigs (n = 32, female, 25-40 kg). The pigs were divided into 8 groups (4 in each group) based on post-surgery treatment differences. was assessed by macroscopic appearance, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), micro-computed tomography (micro-CT), and histologic and immunohistochemistry tests.

RESULTS: At 6 months, the ACS-implanted group exhibited better defect filling and a greater number of chondrocyte-like cells in the defect area than the blank groups. MRI and micro-CT imaging evaluations revealed that ACS implantation was an effective treatment for cartilage regeneration. The immunohistochemistry results suggested that more hyaline-like cartilage was generated in the defects of the ACS-implanted group.

CONCLUSIONS: ACS implantation promoted cartilage repair in full-thickness cartilage defects and osteochondral defects with increased hyaline-like cartilage formation at the 6-month follow-up.

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