Results of a project on treating avascular necrosis of the femoral head with advanced cell therapy and biomaterials

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The Biomaterials, Biomechanics and Tissue Engineering (BBT) research group, led by Maria Pau Ginebra, director of the Biomaterials area of the Biomedical Engineering Research Centre (CREB UPC), has completed its participation in the project ‘Treatment of avascular necrosis of the femoral head with advanced cell therapy and biomaterials in an ovine model’, in which it worked in collaboration with a group from the Vall d'Hebron Research Institute led by Dr. Màrius Aguirre. The project received funds from the 2011 Marató event organised by Televisió de Catalunya and the TV3 Foundation, and the results were presented in Barcelona at the 18th Symposium on Regeneration and Transplantation of Organs and Tissues.

The results show that all tissue bioengineering treatments and advanced cell therapy with autologous and allogeneic mesenchymal stem cells expanded ex vivo are safe at experimental level. The treatments stimulated a bone regeneration response in all injured animals. None of the analytical parameters indicated an anomalous immune response or any systemic damage in the treated animals. In all cases, the formation of new bone was observed on existing trabeculae that had varying degrees of necrosis. Consequently, a second phase of clinical trial can be undertaken to assess the efficacy and safety of the new tissue engineering product. This trial will be undertaken at the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron, an entity that collaborated in this project.



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