This focus addresses the repair of articular cartilage defects, tendons, ligaments, and menisci. The ORC is also investigating materials for use as implantation media and tissue engineering applications, and evaluating effective gene therapy techniques and select blood products for repair and healing applications.
Musculoskeletal Tissue Healing
There have been considerable advances in the study of equine tendon injury over the past 20 years and this consensus document draws conclusions from discussion of four key areas; 1) severity grading, 2) genetics of tendon disease, 3) the design of clinical trials and, 4) rehabilitation programs.
Both the sternum and ilium offer a rich supply of stem cells that have similar growth rates. The highest concentration of stem cells is in the first 5 mls of bone marrow aspirate.
Cells acquired from both equine sternum and ilium are similar in their differentiation capacity in vitro. Clinicians can draw marrow from either site without concern that one is superior to another.
This article is a review of equine chondral defect models that have recently been recognized as having specific advantages for translation into human articular cartilage regeneration.
Studies confirmed that the intra-articular injection 20x106 bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) four weeks after creation of full thickness defects on the central weight-bearing area of the medial femoral condyle in the equine stifle caused enhanced cartilage repair quality with increased aggrecan content and increased firmness of the repair tissue.
Current practices for the preparation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for equine musculoskeletal injuries involve culture-expansion to obtain millions of cells for a single treatment.