Learn more about UC TechAlerts – Subscribe to categories and get notified of new UC technologies

Browse Category: Medical > Disease: Musculoskeletal Disorders

Categories

[Search within category]

A NOVEL METHOD FOR TREATING DEGENERATIVE MUSCULOSKELETAL CONDITIONS USING MESENCHYMAL STEM CELLS IN A BILAMINAR CELL PELLET

Stem cell based musculoskeletal tissue-engineering presents the unique opportunity to repair or replace dysfunctional cells in degenerating tissue. In this context, one goal of tissue engineering is to propagate stem cells that can then be reintroduced into the degenerating tissue to repair or replace dysfunctional cells, restore the physical and biochemical properties of the tissue, and re-establish normal function. In particular, mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are useful in the treatment of musculoskeletal degenerative conditions such as degenerative disc disease and osteoarthritis.  MSCs are abundant, relatively easy to isolate, and can differentiate into a variety of cell types. However, the ischemic and inflammatory environment characteristic of injured tissues proves hostile for the direct introduction of MSCs, which often do not survive in this setting. While growth factors are commonly used to pre-differentiate MSCs into chondrocytes prior to their use, this can cause terminal differentiation and cell hypertrophy that leads to inferior extracellular matrix material properties. Instead, pellet culture systems are better suited for tissue engineering because they can mimic certain embryonic microenvironments that stimulate stable cell differentiation and better support the regenerative process.    

IMPROVED METHOD FOR OSTEOPOROTIC FRACTURE RISK ESTIMATION

Although there is no cure for osteoporosis, prevention and early detection can dramatically decrease the risk of bone fracture. Currently, the risk of a bone fracture is determined by image analysis of bone density measurements from various parts of the body (i.e. bone densitometry or CAT scan). Since these measurements are all bone based, the only risk factor assessed is skeletal weakness. A UCSF investigator has developed an improved method to identify people at elevated risk of osteoporotic fracture. By enhancing the current bone density-based measurements, this method provides a more accurate estimate of fracture risk.

  • Go to Page: