Some people since childhood know whatbone fracture, and how long the process of their fusion. Fortunately, scientists from all over the world are constantly looking for ways to speed up treatment - in early March we told how researchers from Carnegie Mellon University decided to use graphene for this. In the treatment of fractures, 3D printing technology is also very useful - there are materials that help bone cells to multiply quickly and correctly. Recently, scientists from the universities of Maryland and Texas seriously improved this technology.
Inherently printed on a 3D printermaterials serve as scaffolding. They are implanted in the injury site and help the bone cells to multiply correctly and quickly and move from the adjacent bone to the damaged one. In the end, the cells completely crowd out the gradually dissolving material, and the bone becomes healthy and strong.
Until now, this technology could not be appliedin the treatment of osteochondral tissue, which is present in the long bones of the arms and legs. The fact is that at each end there is a layer of smooth compressible cartilage, which gradually turns into hard bone. Thus, a technology that is effective for splicing homogeneous bones cannot be used for splicing heterogeneous bones.
It was impossible untilThe researchers did not create a material with a structure similar to osteochondral tissue. It consists in part of a soft polymer with a cartilaginous consistency, which gradually turns into hard ceramic in the form of bone. The pores contained in them allow the cartilage and bone cells to gradually migrate into them, given the presence of blood vessels.
The next step for researchers is to creatematerials that are specifically designed for specific types of injury. As a rule, complex injuries of heterogeneous bones occur in athletes, but the researchers remind them that ordinary people may encounter them.
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