View Full Version : Promising new treatment for cartilage in the works?

02-08-2010, 08:38 AM
Strictly speaking, not an NBA article. But it's interesting to see that within the playing careers of some current Pacers, we're likely to have the ability to re-grow cartilage. So I figured I'd post it in the main forum, where it's more relevant.


EVANSTON, Ill. --- Northwestern University researchers are the first to design a bioactive nanomaterial that promotes the growth of new cartilage in vivo and without the use of expensive growth factors. Minimally invasive, the therapy activates the bone marrow stem cells and produces natural cartilage. No conventional therapy can do this.

The results will be published online the week of Feb. 1 by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

"Unlike bone, cartilage does not grow back, and therefore clinical strategies to regenerate this tissue are of great interest," said Samuel I. Stupp, senior author, Board of Trustees Professor of Chemistry, Materials Science and Engineering, and Medicine, and director of the Institute for BioNanotechnology in Medicine. Countless people -- amateur athletes, professional athletes and people whose joints have just worn out -- learn this all too well when they bring their bad knees, shoulders and elbows to an orthopaedic surgeon.

02-08-2010, 08:40 AM
This explanation helped me understand exactly what's going on in NBA players' knees:

"Cartilage does not regenerate in adults. Once you are fully grown you have all the cartilage you'll ever have," said first author Ramille N. Shah, assistant professor of materials science and engineering at the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and assistant professor of orthopaedic surgery at the Feinberg School of Medicine. Shah is also a resident faculty member at the Institute for BioNanotechnology in Medicine.

Type II collagen is the major protein in articular cartilage, the smooth, white connective tissue that covers the ends of bones where they come together to form joints.

"Our material of nanoscopic fibers stimulates stem cells present in bone marrow to produce cartilage containing type II collagen and repair the damaged joint," Shah said. "A procedure called microfracture is the most common technique currently used by doctors, but it tends to produce a cartilage having predominantly type I collagen which is more like scar tissue."

02-08-2010, 10:30 AM
Darn! Why didn't we take Blair?! :duh:

02-08-2010, 11:19 AM
Now we're gonna see it!

Seriously, this could be a really good thing (for a lot of people) if it pans out.

Will Galen
02-08-2010, 11:21 AM
Darn! Why didn't we take Blair?! :duh:

Good One! :laugh:

02-08-2010, 11:23 AM
Could've really helped Bender. Or Tim Hardaway for that matter (in his later seasons).

02-09-2010, 12:01 AM
As a person with a scoped knee, I'd like some of that cartilage back please. Sign me up.

Drove my knee into the ground diving for a softball catch, started swelling every time I went out running, and that was about the end of that. Frustrating.

02-09-2010, 12:05 AM
This would make my life a little bit easier, I'm bone on bone here.