Purpose: The aim of this work is to investigate the feasibility of non-autologous transplantation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) with or without differentiation for the regeneration of osteochondral defects in rabbits using a biphasic composite construct composed of platelet-rich fibrin glue (PR-FG) and hydroxyapatite. Methods: After isolation and culture, hMSCs were seeded on biphasic composite constructs (hydroxyapatite + PR-FG) and transplanted into osteochondral defects of adult New Zealand white rabbits. Treatment of individual defects was applied by random assignment to one of five groups: (1) control, defects untreated; (2) hydroxyapatite, defects filled with hydroxyapatite only; (3) hydroxyapatite + PR-FG, defects filled with a composite of hydroxyapatite and PR-FG; (4) hydroxyapatite + PR-FG + undifferentiated hMSCs; and (5) hydroxyapatite + PR-FG + differentiated hMSCs. Rabbits were killed at 4 or 8 weeks post-surgery, at which time osteochondral repair was macroscopically and histologically evaluated and scored using the modified International Cartilage Repair Society scoring system. Results: The group in which defects were seeded with differentiated hMSCs (group 5) showed superior healing of osteochondral defects based on macroscopic and histological observations compared to other groups. Specifically, 8 weeks after implantation, defects were filled with more hyaline-like cartilage and were better integrated with the surrounding native cartilage. The histological scores were significantly better than those of other groups (16.3 at 8 weeks, p < 0.01). Conclusion: Xenogeneic transplantation of differentiated hMSCs using a biphasic composite construct effectively repaired osteochondral defect in a rabbit model. Differentiated hMSCs showed superior healing of chondral lesion to undifferentiated hMSCs.
- Chondrogenic differentiation
- Human mesenchymal stem cells
- Osteochondral defect
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine