Piezoelectricity is the secret to successfully regrowing robust, functional cartilage in mammalian joints — ScienceDaily

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UConn bioengineers successfully regrew cartilage in a rabbit’s knee, a promising hop toward healing joints in humans, they report in the 12 January issue of Science Translational Medicine.

Arthritis is a common and painful disease caused by damage to our joints. Normally pads of cartilage cushion those spots. But injuries or age can wear it away. As cartilage deteriorates, bone begins to hit bone, and everyday activities like walking become terribly painful.

The best treatments available try to replace the damaged cartilage with a healthy piece taken from elsewhere in the body or a donor. But healthy cartilage is in limited supply. If it’s your own, transplanting it could injure the place it was taken from; if it’s from someone else, your immune system is likely to reject it.

The best possible treatment would be to regrow healthy cartilage in the damaged joint itself. Some…

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