Bioactive Glass 13-93 as a Subchondral Substrate for Tissue-engineered Osteochondral Constructs: a Pilot Study


Background: Replacement of diseased areas of the joint with tissue-engineered osteochondral grafts has shown potential in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Bioactive glasses are candidates for the osseous analog of these grafts. Questions/purposes: (1) Does Bioactive Glass 13-93 (BG 13-93) as a subchondral substrate improve collagen and glycosaminoglycan production in a tissue-engineered cartilage layer? (2) Does BG 13-93 as a culture medium supplement increase the collagen and glycosaminoglycan production and improve the mechanical properties in a tissue-engineered cartilage layer? Methods: in Study 1, bioactive glass samples (n = 4) were attached to a chondrocyte-seeded agarose layer to form an osteochondral construct, cultured for 6 weeks, and compared to controls. In Study 2, bioactive glass samples (n = 5) were cocultured with cell-seeded agarose for 6 weeks. The cell-seeded agarose layer was exposed to BG 13-93 either continuously or for the first or last 2 weeks in culture or had no exposure. Results: Osteochondral constructs with a BG 13-93 base had improved glycosaminoglycan deposition but less collagen II content. Agarose scaffolds that had a temporal exposure to BG 13-93 within the culture medium had improved mechanical and biochemical properties compared to continuous or no exposure. Conclusions: when used as a subchondral substrate, BG 13-93 did not improve biochemical properties compared to controls. However, as a culture medium supplement, BG 13-93 improved the biochemical and mechanical properties of a tissue-engineered cartilage layer. Clinical Relevance: BG 13-93 may not be suitable in osteochondral constructs but could have potential as a medium supplement for neocartilage formation.


Materials Science and Engineering


University of Missouri--Columbia Research Council

Keywords and Phrases

Bioactive Glass; Osteochondra Constructs

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Document Type

Article - Journal

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© 2011 Springer Verlag, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Mar 2011