Advancing in the quality of the cells assigned for Autologous Chondrocyte Implantation (ACI) method
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Tissue engineering offers new strategies in developing treatments for the repair of hyaline cartilage. Autologous chondrocyte implantation (ACI) method is initially based on cultivation of chondrocytes in vitro, followed by injection of the obtained cell suspension below the periosteal flap into the cartilage defect. The problem that appears by cell expansion in a monolayer culture is dedifferentiation of the cells – changing from hyaline to more fibroblastic-like phenotype. After using 2-dimensional collagen/fibrin scaffold seeded with cells, which could not maintain chondrocyte phenotype, we are now examining the potential of alginate/agarose hydrogel. The phenotype status of the cells is monitored by a real-time PCR assay which enables the observation of changes in gene expression patterns. The results of our study suggest that the 3-dimensional environment of the tested scaffold provides suitable environment for chondrocyte redifferentiation.
KeywordsTissue Engineering Monolayer Culture Cartilage Defect Alginate Bead Hyaline Cartilage
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