Articular cartilage reconstruction using xenogeneic epiphyses slices

Dror Robinson, Michael Guetzky, Reuvit Halperin, David Schneider, Zvi Nevo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Reconstruction of articular cartilage defects using adult osteochondral allografts is an established clinical procedure, whose principal drawback is lack of lateral integration of the grafts to the surrounding tissue. Autologous chondrocytes transplantation is a sophisticated technique requiring cell culture and a staged operation. Its main draw back is the lack of mechanical strength early on. This study was conducted in order to evaluate the possibility of using embryonal epiphyses as a cartilage reconstruction tissue. A xenogeneic human to rabbit sub-acute osteochondral defect model was designed to evaluate the possibility of allogeneic implantation in humans. The following procedures were perforned (n = 5): transplantation of 1. live epiphyses 2. live epiphyses with autogeneic periosteum 3. de-vitalized epiphyses and 4. devitalized epiphyses with autogeneic articular chondrocytes. A fifth control group did not receive any implant. Animals in groups 1 and 2 had a viable reconstruction of the articular surface with little evidence of rejection and without pannus formation. Animals in groups 3 and 4 became severely arthritic and the graft was resorbed. Nitric oxide synthase accumulation was reduced in group 1 and 2 as compared to groups 3, 4, and 5, indicating a joint preserving function of the epiphyseal grafts. Epiphyseal grafts appear to be a feasible procedure for reconstruction of articular cartilage defects even in a xenogeneic model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-277
Number of pages9
JournalCell and Tissue Banking
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2002


  • Cartilage transplantation
  • Cell transplantation
  • Epiphyses
  • Human
  • Rabbit
  • Xenogeneic transplantation


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