A biomimetic approach to regenerate a functional NP tissue in the degenerating intervertebral disc.


Ito, Keita (Eindhoven University of Technology)


"The development of regenerative therapies for the intervertebral disc (IVD) is of much interest because IVD degeneration is a major cause of low back pain, one of the leading causes of disability worldwide. The most common approaches are to utilize biomaterials, cells, and/or molecular agents, alone or in combination. Some of these approaches are moving toward clinical implementation and have shown promising clinical results. However, actual tissue regeneration has been more elusive.

Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine have often focused on tissue morphology but clinically tissue and organ function may be more important to reduce pain and disability. In terms of the IVD, whose function is mainly biomechanical as a cartilaginous intervertebral joint, this has not always been the focus when designing regenerative approaches. In our and partner laboratories, we have taken a biomimetic approach to develop biomaterials that help to return IVD function. This talk will explain some of these approaches, how they have been evaluated and highlight some major challenges experienced early in their clinical implementation."


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