Updates on our Research Effort to Produce a PRP that’s better at Cartilage Repair
What does the word “chondrogenic” mean? Chondrogenesis means cartilage production so chondrogenic means cartilage producing. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) contains a number of growth factors, some of which have been shown to stimulate the repair of cartilage. Early PRP studies do show that PRP seems to be effective in mild knee arthritis. However, can we create a specifically chondrogenic PRP? Our practice’s research team has been working to that end and we have some interesting preliminary results. Above you see fluorescent microscopy of stem cells growing in culture with the cartilage components being produced by the cells tagged with a fluorescent antibody. The top slide without chondrogenic PRP looks a bit like dim stars, which is little bits of cartilage components lighting up. The bottom slide is of stem cells that have been exposed to our first chondrogenic PRP candidate. Notice that now the cartilage components explode and look like an entire galaxy! We have some more tweaking to do, but soon we should be able to offer our patients a PRP tweaked for more cartilage repair. This will be the world’s first “chondrogenic PRP”. The upshot? We spend a lot of time, energy, and money innovating so that we can make sure that we remain the leaders in the use of biologics for orthopedic injuries!