Repairing Cartilage

Polymer fills in wounds, provides scaffolding for new growth

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MONDAY, March 8, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- New research from Duke University offers potential for a new way of repairing cartilage damage.

Duke biomedical engineers developed a method of using a natural polymer to fill in and protect cartilage wounds within joints. It also provides supportive scaffolding to encourage the growth of new cartilage.

The Duke researchers tested the technique on rabbits. The study appears in the March issue of the Annals of Biomedical Engineering.

"We feel that the outcomes from this study suggest that therapies like this one hold promise for future, successful cartilage repair procedures," researcher Dan Nettles says in a prepared statement.

"Cartilage is a tissue that does not have the ability to heal itself, so there cannot be any healing without outside intervention. There are still many hurdles and challenges to overcome, but we have been very encouraged by the positive results to date," researcher T. Parker Vail says in a prepared statement.

More information

The Arthritis Foundation has information about research into new cartilage for damaged joints.

SOURCE: Duke University, news release, March 8, 2004

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