Role of Platelet-Rich Plasma in Articular Cartilage Injury and Disease

Introduction: The articular cartilage in the setting of a diseased articular environment has very poor regenerative capacity. Thus, clinical and laboratory research aimed at biological approaches to repair cartilage injury using growth factors provides promise for the treatment of disabling articular cartilage disease. Growth factors are naturally occurring substances—often proteins or steroid hormones—that are capable of stimulating cellular differentiation, growth or proliferation while serving an important role in regulating various cellular processes. MORE…

Basic Science behind Platelet-Rich Plasma: Osteoarthritis is a chronic degenerative joint disease in which the catabolic activity that becomes favored within chondrocytes leads to eventual articular cartilage wear.Cartilage has an extremely limited ability for self-repair given its avascularity; thus, the traditional inflammatory repair process does not contribute to the healing response in the setting of cartilage injury as it has no means to travel to the locally affected tissue. The rationale for the use of PRP is that the supraphysiological release of platelet-derived factors at the direct site of cartilage injury or disease can stimulate the natural healing cascade and tissue regeneration. MORE…

Image result for platelet rich plasma therapyPlatelet activation leads to a release of the aforementioned growth factors and hundreds of others from its α-granules to promote cartilage matrix synthesis, increase cell growth, migration, and phenotype changes, and facilitate protein transcription within chondrocytes. The chemoattractants stored in platelets draw proteins, such as fibrinogen and fibrin, the latter of which acts as an initial scaffold for stem cells to migrate and differentiate. Generally, basic science evidence has demonstrated the ability of PRP to increase mesenchymal stem cell and chondrocyte proliferation, deposit type II collagen and proteoglycan. This in theory may accelerate the formation of cartilage repair tissue. MORE…

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