TISSUE ENGINEERING FOR TOTAL MENISCAL SUBSTITUTION. Animal study in sheep model: results at 12 months

Elizaveta Kon, Giuseppe Filardo, Matilde Tschon, Milena Fini, Gianluca Giavaresi, Leonardo Marchesini Reggiani, Catharina Chiari, Stefan Nehrer, Ivan Martin, Donald Salter, Luigi Ambrosio, Maurilio Marcacci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of the study was to investigate the use of a hyaluronic acid/polycaprolactone material for meniscal tissue engineering and to evaluate the tissue regeneration after the augmentation of the implant with expanded autologous chondrocytes. Eighteen skeletally mature sheep were treated. The animals were divided in three groups: cell-free scaffold, scaffold seeded with autologous chondrocytes and meniscectomy alone. The implant was sutured to the capsule and to the meniscal ligament. At 12 months gross assessment, histology and histomorphometry were used to assess meniscus implant, knee joint and osteoarthritis development. All implants showed excellent capsular ingrowth at the periphery. Implant gross assessment showed significant differences between cell-seeded and cell-free groups (p=0.011). The histological analysis indicated a cellular colonization throughout the implanted constructs. Avascular cartilaginous tissue formation was significantly more frequent in the cell-seeded constructs. Joint gross assessment showed that sheep treated with scaffold implantation achieved a significant higher score than those who underwent meniscectomy (p
Original languageEnglish
JournalTissue Engineering, Part A
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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