Objective: To investigate usefulness of osteochondral grafting from the costo-osteochondral junction as a repair technique for articular cartilage defects histologic and biochemical analysis of grafted cartilage in rabbit knees was evaluated up to 48. weeks after transplantation. Methods: Twenty New Zealand White rabbits were used. A costal osteochondral plug was harvested from a middle rib. After trimming, it was transplanted into a cylindrical osteochondral 2.5. mm diameter and 5. mm deep defect created in the knee. The animals were sacrificed at 6, 12, 24, and 48. weeks after transplantation. Defect sites were inspected macroscopically, and then by light microscopy. Samples were evaluated for cell viability using a fluorescent. in situ double-staining protocol with confocal laser microscopic analysis. Samples were also processed to assess type I and II collagen and aggrecan mRNA expression using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Results: Histologically, bone union was achieved in all plugs. Confocal microscopic analysis revealed chondrocyte viability in the 48-week grafts; the distribution of chondrocytes was similar to surrounding articular cartilage. The expression of type II collagen and aggrecan mRNA in the grafted cartilage was consistent with normal articular cartilage and normal costal cartilage. These results were observed over 6-48. weeks. Conclusions: Our study revealed that chondrocytes in the grafted cartilage were viable at least up to 48. weeks and that mRNA expression of type II collagen and aggrecan was also similar to that of normal articular cartilage. These results suggest that costal osteochondral grafting can be a useful alternative in the treatment of osteochondral defects.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine