A versatile, engineered cartilage platform for tissue regeneration and disease modeling
Date of Issue2015
School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering
The articular cartilage is a load-bearing surface of synovial joints. However, it is highly susceptible to traumatic injuries and diseases. Tissue-engineering strategies offer solutions by generating engineered cartilage tissue that can fulfill two functions: in vivo cartilage regeneration and in vitro disease modeling. This thesis has employed the living hyaline cartilaginous graft (LhCG) to fulfill these functions. Chondrocyte isolation was made efficient through multiple-enzymatic digestion, improving LhCG fabrication efficiency. The as-generated LhCGs were able to regenerate cartilage over 6 months in skeletally mature pigs, assessed through radiographical, biochemical, and biomechanical tests. By placing the LhCGs in presence of other relevant cell types, osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) disease progression was established. Importantly, the role of individual cells in disease pathogenesis could be studied. In summary, this thesis has demonstrated the dual function capability of LhCG for in vivo cartilage regeneration and in vitro disease modeling.