At some point it catches up with everyone. With increasing age joints and bones wear out. When for instance the cartilage, functioning as cushions between the joints becomes worn out, in most cases only the surgeon implanting a replacement part helps. Until now at least.
Scientists of the german Jena University – together with colleagues from France, England, Germany and Switzerland – are working on a tiny device that is being implanted in the joint and is supposed to trigger the regeneration of cartilage produced naturally in the body. The project OPHIS (Composite Phenotypic Triggers for Bone and Cartilage Repair) is subsidized with 4 Million Euro from the EU, of which 350.000 go to the Jena University. The project is running for four years.
Mostly Arthrosis and Arthritis patients will be able to profit by the results of the project, as the regeneration of the cartilage can be reactivated on smaller lacerations when the doctor recognizes the illnesses early enough. “Even though there are products like this on the market,” says Prof Dr Frank Müller, Materials Scientist of the Jena University. “None of them adheres actively with the bone underneath. This is exactly the improvement of our implant.”
The cellulose implant, of one centimeter diameter, is sponge-like and has two different surfaces. “The implant can substantially adhere to the bone through inorganic activation with calcium phosphate-nanoparticles on its lower surface,” explains the Jena Professor for Science and Technology of Surfaces and Interfaces.
“Scientists of another sub-project in Brighton in England apply growth factors on the opposite, porous surface of the implant to trigger the regeneration and ingrowth of cartilage cells.” Materials scientists of Jena University are able to produce the required porous surfaces with an especially developed process via ice templating. “For that purpose vegetal cellulose is being dissolved in water containing solvent and then deep-frozen at a defined speed,” says Prof Müller. “The ice crystals are so grown at a controllable temperature gradient. Afterwards the cellulose is being freeze-dried, so that little holes – pores – take the place of the ice cristals, as the water is being changed from a solid to a gaseous aggregate state. So a micro porous surface is created according to a given specification.” A facility especially for this process had been constructed in Jena.
Apart from cellulose implants composites from cellulose and collagen are being tested. These are even more promising, as the structural protein collagen is an important organic part of the connective tissue and thereby also of the bone and cartilage.
Moreover the scientists of the research project are aiming to fighting osteoporosis. Again tiny implants are supposed to stop the bone loss and to trigger the bone growth. These implants constist of bacterial cellulose, which is developed in co-operation with the research group of Dr Dana Kralisch at the Institute for Technical Chemistry and Environmental Chemistry at the Jena University. “Certain bacterial strains use glucose in their culture medium to produce cellulose,“ the project manager of Jena University explains. “When you influence the production by a shaking movement of the fluid, small pellets will form. These structures which are porous by nature are provided with defined protein sequences – so-called peptides – and are implanted into the bone. Bone forming cells migrate and the bone growth is re-stimulated.“Contact:
Sebastian Hollstein | idw
Nagoya physicists resolve long-standing mystery of structure-less transition
21.08.2017 | Nagoya University
Scientists from the MSU studied new liquid-crystalline photochrom
21.08.2017 | Lomonosov Moscow State University
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences
21.08.2017 | Health and Medicine
21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences