Author(s): Ma PX, Schloo B, Mooney D, Langer R
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Abstract Neocartilage was engineered by culturing bovine chondrocytes on poly(glycolic acid) (PGA) fibrous nonwoven scaffolds. The biomechanical properties and morphologies of the PGA-chondrocyte constructs were studied over 12 weeks of in vitro culture. PGA scaffolds without cells lost their mechanical strength and structural integrity between week 2 and week 3 in culture. The thickness of the PGA-chondrocyte constructs decreased by 35\% during the first 3 weeks, but the thickness increased from week 3 to week 9 to a thickness 42\% higher than that of the starting scaffolds, which was then maintained. Safranin O staining of PGA-chondrocyte constructs revealed increasing proteoglycan formation over time. The compressive modules of PGA-chondrocyte constructs increased with in vitro culture time, and reached the same order of magnitude as that of normal bovine cartilage at week 9. The aggregate modulus of the PGA-chondrocyte constructs decreased by 57\% over the first 2 weeks but then increased, reaching the same order of magnitude as normal bovine cartilage at week 12. The apparent permeability of the PGA-chondrocyte constructs, which was initially four orders of magnitude above that of normal cartilage, decreased between weeks 1 and 3 and thereafter remained the same order of magnitude as that measured for normal cartilage.
This article was published in J Biomed Mater Res
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Biotherapeutic Discovery