Cell and Tissue Banking

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 467–475 | Cite as

Meniscal allograft sterilisation: effect on biomechanical and histological properties

  • David Bui
  • Vedran Lovric
  • Rema Oliver
  • Nicky Bertollo
  • David Broe
  • William R. WalshEmail author
Original Article


Sterilisation of allografts are a crucial step in ensuring safety and viability. Current sterilisation standards such as 25 kGy gamma irradiation (γ) can have adverse effects on the ultrastructure and biomechanical properties of allograft tissue. Supercritical CO2 (SCCO2) technology, represents an improved sterilisation process that potentially preserves tissue properties. This study aimed to test the effect of SCCO2 sterilisation on the biomechanical and histological properties of the meniscus and compare this to the current standard of γ. Thirty-two 18-month old ovine menisci were randomly assigned into three groups for sterilisation (SCCO2, γ and control). After treatment, biomechanical indentation testing (stiffness and stress relaxation) or histological analysis [percentage of void, cells and extracellular matrix (ECM) per slide] was undertaken. Both SCCO2 and gamma groups displayed an increase in stiffness and stress relaxation as compared to control, however, this difference was lesser in samples treated with SCCO2. No significant histological quantitative differences were detected between SCCO2 and control specimens. Gamma-treated samples demonstrated a significant increase in void and decrease in ECM. Interestingly, both treatment groups demonstrated a decreasing mean void and increasing ECM percentage when analysed from outer to inner zones. No significant differences were detected in all-endpoints when analysed by section. SCCO2 sterilisation represents a potential feasible alternative to existing sterilization techniques such as γ.


Meniscus Allograft Supercritical carbon dioxide Gamma irradiation Sterilisation and Biomechanical 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Bui
    • 1
  • Vedran Lovric
    • 1
  • Rema Oliver
    • 1
  • Nicky Bertollo
    • 1
  • David Broe
    • 1
  • William R. Walsh
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Surgical and Orthopaedic Research Laboratories Prince of Wales Clinical School, Prince of Wales HospitalUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia

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