Scientist Can Grow Joints Inside the Body Using Stem Cells
For the first time ever, a team of scientists has demonstrated it is possible to grow joints inside the body that are capable of full range movements and can bear weight by using a patient’s own stem cells, after damaged bone has been removed.
The team used a computer that created artificial scaffolds that were anatomically the same size and shape as rabbit hip joints. Only a single compound called a growth factor was needed to induce the rabbits’ bodies to remodel the joint tissue. The work was carried out by Professor Jeremy J Mao, and his team at Columbia University Medical Center, New York, USA, and colleagues from University of Missouri and Clemson University.
The scientists removed the limbs from 10 rabbits and replaced them with an artificial limb-shaped skeleton.
Until now, no one has been able to regenerate a limb joint with either stem cells harvested or the host’s endogenous stem cells. If their research holds the same results for humans, the regenerated joints would last longer than the titanium or stainless steel joints, which currently only last approximately 10 to 15 years.of titanium or stainless steel.