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Cells from cow knee joints used to grow new cartilage tissue in laboratory

In an effort to develop a method for cartilage tissue engineering, researchers at Umeå University in Sweden successfully used cartilage cells from cow knee joints. By creating a successful method with conditions conducive to growing healthy cartilage tissue, the findings could help lead to a new treatment cure for osteoarthritis using stem cell-based tissue engineering. This is according to a doctoral dissertation at Umeå University.

Articular cartilage is tissue that is found on all the joint surfaces in the body. Since the tissue is not supplied with any blood vessels, it has a low self-repair capacity. Joint injuries and wear often damage cartilage tissue, leading to a condition called osteoarthritis. In 2012 in Sweden, 26.6 percent of all people aged 45 years or older were diagnosed with osteoarthritis. In serious cases, osteoarthritis can mean the loss of practically the entire cartilage tissue in the joint. While the condition causes pain and immobility for the individual, it also burdens society with accumulated medical costs.

Neocartilage tissue
Neocartilage tissue
Image Credit: Janne Ylärinne