Currently, an interdisciplinary research project is exploring new technologies with regard to biodegradable implants. The project is carried out by two research institutions at the Technische Universität Dresden, the Max Bergmann Center of Biomaterials (MBC) at the Institute of Materials Sciences and the Institute of Textile and Clothing Technology (ITB), as well as the Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research in Dresden (IPF) and the University Hospitals in Ulm and Heidelberg.
The project’s aim is to create biologically resorbable scaffolds using flock technology. Flock technology for example is applied in an industrial scale to the production of the velvety surfaces of spectacle-cases. Now, this method shall help to produce new types of medical implants. In order to create resorbable scaffolds, membranes made of mineralised collagen are covered with a gelatine-based biocompatible glue. In the next step, biologically degradable fibres are flocked on the tapes. "This way a kind of ’velvet structure’ is created on which cells can be seeded with a high density", explains Birgit Mrozik, scientific coworker at the ITB.
To make tissue engineered implants e.g. for cartilage defects, human chondrocytes are cultivated on the scaffolds in cell culture labs outside the body. Later on the whole cell matrix construct is implanted to fill the tissue defect. As the cartilage tissue regenerates, the flock implants then start to degrade.
Birgit Mrozik | alfa
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