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Polygence Scholar2021
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Ajay Narayan

Centennial High SchoolClass of 2023Frisco, Texas



  • "A Brief Overview of Scaffolds as a Potential Solution to Articular Cartilage Defects" with mentor Chrissy (July 14, 2022)

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A Brief Overview of Scaffolds as a Potential Solution to Articular Cartilage Defects

Started Dec. 9, 2021

Abstract or project description

There are many alternatives to therapy of deficient articular cartilage, including injections/implantations of stem cells and tissue engineering. This paper will cover only tissue engineering, which is a field of biomedical engineering in which tissues are made functional by combining scaffolds, cells, and biologically active molecules. The poor regenerative and reparative ability of articular cartilage following injury or degenerative diseases makes this meniscal tissue a prime target for cell-based therapy and tissue engineering. Consequently, strategies based on an exogenous scaffold, a critical element in tissue engineering, have been investigated for cartilage repair. Scaffolds play a role similar to the extracellular matrix (ECM) in natural tissues, supporting cell attachment, proliferation, and differentiation by creating a 3D environment to induce tissue formation. The architectural design of scaffolds should create an environment that can promote the regeneration of cartilage-like constructs. According to the University of Southern California, “because tissue scaffolds are constructed like existing ECMs and use biocompatible materials, they are easily integrated into the body.”, showing that scaffolds might be an encouraging solution, as this high biocompatibility indicates that there is a greater chance of completely fixing the problem, rather than just temporarily halting these issues, and having other problems in the future. There are many different methods for constructing scaffolds, such as freeze-drying, molding, electrospinning, 3D bioprinting, and stereolithography, as well as materials and combinations that can be used in their manufacturing. This paper will analyze the most promising types of scaffolds to rectify the problems associated with recreating and restoring meniscus and cartilage.