Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 26 (2011), Supplement 15. Mar. 2011
Cartilage failure in diarthrodial joints results in pain and a reduction in quality of life. The goal of cartilage tissue engineering is to replace or regenerate these mechanically loaded tissues to restore function to the joint. Recent advances in the authors' laboratory have resulted in the production of cartilage and fibrocartilage with clinically relevant properties. A review of salient results will constitute the bulk of this manuscript. After providing a brief background of the clinical problem, this review will highlight several specific tissue engineering tools. The approaches used to produce mechanically functional cartilage through tissue engineering have several parallels to the problems faced in osseointegration, eg, the need for mechanically appropriate tissues at the implantation site. The discussion that follows will focus on how approaches developed in identifying alternative cell sources and various exogenous stimuli for producing new cartilage may be applicable to osseointegration.
Keywords: articular cartilage, regenerative medicine, self-assembly, stem cells, tissue engineering