Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Bone That Blends Into Tendons Created By Engineers

Date:
August 31, 2008
Source:
Georgia Institute of Technology
Summary:
Engineers have used skin cells to create artificial bones that mimic the ability of natural bone to blend into other tissues such as tendons or ligaments. The artificial bones provide for better integration with the body and handle weight more successfully.

A microscopic image of a 10 mm collagen scaffold containing a uniform distribution of skin cells (blue) seeded on top of a 3-D polylysine gradient (green).
Credit: Image courtesy of Georgia Institute of Technology

Engineers at Georgia Tech have used skin cells to create artificial bones that mimic the ability of natural bone to blend into other tissues such as tendons or ligaments. The artificial bones display a gradual change from bone to softer tissue rather than the sudden shift of previously developed artificial tissue, providing better integration with the body and allowing them to handle weight more successfully.

Related Articles


“One of the biggest challenges in regenerative medicine is to have a graded continuous interface, because anatomically that’s how the majority of tissues appear and there are studies that strongly suggest that the graded interface provides better integration and load transfer,” said Andres Garcia, professor in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Garcia and former graduate student Jennifer Phillips, along with research technician Kellie Burns and their collaborators Joseph Le Doux and Robert Guldberg, were not only able to create artificial bone that melds into softer tissues, but were also able to implant the technology in vivo for several weeks.

They created the tissue by coating a three-dimensional polymer scaffold with a gene delivery vehicle that encodes a transcription factor known as Runx2. They generated a high concentration of Runx2 at one end of the scaffold and decreased that amount until they ended up with no transcription factor on the other end, resulting in a precisely controlled spatial gradient of Runx2. After that, they seeded skin fibroblasts uniformly onto the scaffold. The skin cells on the parts of the scaffold containing a high concentration of Runx2 turned into bone, while the skin cells on the scaffold end with no Runx2 turned into soft tissue. The result is an artificial bone that gradually turns into soft tissue, such as tendons or ligaments.

If the technology is able to pass further testing, one application could be anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery. Oftentimes, ACL surgery fails at the point where the ligament meets the bone. But if an artificial bone/ligament construct with these types of graded transitions were implanted, it might lead to more successful outcomes for patients.

“Every organ in our body is made up of complex, heterogeneous structures, so the ability to engineer tissues that more closely mimic these natural architectures is a critical challenge for the next wave of tissue engineering,” said Phillips, who is now working at Emory University as a postdoctoral research fellow in developmental biology.

Now that they have been able to demonstrate that they can implant the tissue in vivo for several weeks, the team’s next step is to show that the tissue can handle weight for an even longer period of time.

The research appears in the August 26, 2008, edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Georgia Institute of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Georgia Institute of Technology. "Bone That Blends Into Tendons Created By Engineers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104945.htm>.
Georgia Institute of Technology. (2008, August 31). Bone That Blends Into Tendons Created By Engineers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104945.htm
Georgia Institute of Technology. "Bone That Blends Into Tendons Created By Engineers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104945.htm (accessed March 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, March 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) — A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) — In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
What's Different About This Latest Ebola Vaccine

What's Different About This Latest Ebola Vaccine

Newsy (Mar. 26, 2015) — A whole virus Ebola vaccine has been shown to protect monkeys exposed to the virus. Here&apos;s what&apos;s different about this vaccine. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

Newsy (Mar. 26, 2015) — Indiana Gov. Mike Pence says he will bring additional state resources to help stop the epidemic. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins