Symposium: New Approaches to Allograft Transplantation

Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research

, Volume 466, Issue 8, pp 1912-1920

First online:

Shaped, Stratified, Scaffold-free Grafts for Articular Cartilage Defects

  • EunHee HanAffiliated withDepartment of Bioengineering, University of California-San Diego
  • , Won C. BaeAffiliated withDepartment of Radiology, University of California-San Diego
  • , Nancy D. Hsieh-BonasseraAffiliated withDepartment of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of California-San Diego
  • , Van W. WongAffiliated withDepartment of Bioengineering, University of California-San Diego
  • , Barbara L. SchumacherAffiliated withDepartment of Bioengineering, University of California-San Diego
  • , Simon GörtzAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California-San Diego
  • , Koichi MasudaAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopedic Surgery and Biochemistry, Rush Medical College at Rush University Medical Center
  • , William D. BugbeeAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California-San Diego
  • , Robert L. SahAffiliated withDepartment of Bioengineering, University of California-San DiegoWhitaker Institute of Biomedical Engineering, University of California-San Diego Email author 

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Abstract

One goal of treatment for large articular cartilage defects is to restore the anatomic contour of the joint with tissue having a structure similar to native cartilage. Shaped and stratified cartilaginous tissue may be fabricated into a suitable graft to achieve such restoration. We asked if scaffold-free cartilaginous constructs, anatomically shaped and targeting spherically-shaped hips, can be created using a molding technique and if biomimetic stratification of the shaped constructs can be achieved with appropriate superficial and middle/deep zone chondrocyte subpopulations. The shaped, scaffold-free constructs were formed from the alginate-released bovine calf chondrocytes with shaping on one (saucer), two (cup), or neither (disk) surfaces. The saucer and cup constructs had shapes distinguishable quantitatively (radius of curvature of 5.5 ± 0.1 mm for saucer and 2.8 ± 0.1 mm for cup) and had no adverse effects on the glycosaminoglycan and collagen contents and their distribution in the constructs as assessed by biochemical assays and histology, respectively. Biomimetic stratification of chondrocyte subpopulations in saucer- and cup-shaped constructs was confirmed and quantified using fluorescence microscopy and image analysis. This shaping method, combined with biomimetic stratification, has the potential to create anatomically contoured large cartilaginous constructs.