Cartilage Repair

Cartilage repair

The primary focus of the laboratory in the past thirteen years has been in the development and analysis of systems to improve the very modest repair capabilities that follow cartilage injury. Initial project examined methods for cartilage cell isolation from the joint, propagation of these cells in the laboratory, and arthroscopic delivery to injured regions within the joint. Subsequent studies used potent growth factors to enhance the ability of these transplanted cartilage cells to heal the joint surface, and in so doing, to prevent osteoarthritis. Current studies are aimed at using a variety of growth factors, and more particularly the gene that codes for these growth factors, to bolster the healing response in transplanted cells. The primary focus of these studies is in development of a mechanically durable repair tissue following joint injury in athletes, which will minimize the chance of secondary osteoarthritis, pain, and reduced function.