TitleLong-Term Evaluation of Allogenic Chondrocyte-Loaded PVA-PCL IPN Scaffolds for Articular Cartilage Repair in Rabbits.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsRajagopal K, Dutt V, Balakumar B, Chilbule SK, Walter N, Nair PD, Madhuri V
JournalIndian J Orthop
Date Published2021 Aug

OBJECTIVE: This study tested the long-term efficacy of two synthetic scaffolds for osteochondral defects and compare the outcomes with that of an established technique that uses monolayer cultured chondrocytes in a rabbit model.

METHODS: Articular cartilage defect was created in both knees of 18 rabbits and divided into three groups of six in each. The defects in first group receiving cells loaded on Scaffold A (polyvinyl alcohol-polycaprolactone semi-interpenetrating polymer network (Monophasic, PVA-PCL semi-IPN), the second on Scaffold B (biphasic, PVA-PCL incorporated with bioglass as the lower layer), and the third group received chondrocytes alone. One animal from each group was sacrificed at 2 months and the rest at 1 year. O'Driscoll's score measured the quality of cartilage repair.

RESULTS: The histological outcome had good scores (22, 20, and 19) for all three groups at 2 months. At 1-year follow-up, the chondrocyte alone group had the best scores (mean 20.0 ± 1.4), while the group treated by PVA-PCL semi-IPN scaffolds fared better (mean 15 ± 4.2) than the group that received biphasic scaffolds (mean 11.8 ± 5.9). In all three groups, defects treated without cells scored less than the transplant.

CONCLUSION: These results indicate that while these scaffolds with chondrocytes perform well initially, their late outcome is disappointing. We propose that for all scaffold-based tissue repairs, a long-term evaluation should be mandatory. The slow degrading scaffolds need further modifications to improve the milieu for long-term growth of chondrocytes and their hyaline phenotype for the better incorporation of tissue-engineered constructs.

Alternate JournalIndian J Orthop
PubMed ID34194639
PubMed Central IDPMC8192607