The body is a resilient biological structure, but there's one thing medical science, an increasing number of Baby Boomers, and the majority of professional athletes will all tell you: Take care of your joints, because once you burn up the cartilage you started with, you're not getting any more. But a breakthrough by Northwestern University scientists will now allow adult joints to naturally grow new cartilage for the very first time.
Unlike bone, muscle and other tissues in the body, cartilage that is damaged or worn away over time does not regenerate itself. The cartilage you have when you reach adulthood has to last you for life; if it doesn't, you can suffer debilitating joint pain or even osteoarthiritis, which is neither pleasant nor effectively treatable.
To stimulate the growth of type II collagen -- the main protein in the clean, smooth cartilage that caps bones where they make contact in joints -- the NU researchers created a bioactive nanogel that can be injected into the joint in a minimally invasive manner. The gel self-assmebles into a fibrous, solid extracellular matrix similar to what joint cells see in natural cartilage production. The gel also binds to one of the key growth factors for cartilage regeneration and keeps it localized in the damaged area. This stimulates the stem cells present in bone marrow that in turn activate type II collagen production naturally. The matrix slowly breaks down into nutrients as the natural cartilage builds up, eventually being replaced altogether by locally grown cartilage tissue.
The process has undergone successful animal testing, but its likely got a few more years of testing ahead of it before it could become commonplace. But the timing couldn't be better; an aging population means an increase in achy old joints. A fresh round of cartilage production could keep many of the more senior members of society in the workforce, on the golf course and out of orthopedic surgeon's office.
One step closer to replacing everything in my body with new material! Muahahahaha! Eternal longevity will be mine!
this is nice, if i'm reading this right this is like cure arthritis good right?
no offense for the people who loves Social Security.
Great... more people to take social security money... i bet taxes will increase.
I could not agree more Cloudmaster101. The exploitation of the elder workforce is more money for the government and the non fire-able bureaucracy.... Although this could also be good for people that have messed up knees. I have to take Glucosamine pills twice a day for my bad knees, and I am 26 years old.
No, it just means you don't get to retire, and your children won't have jobs. The longer your body lasts the longer you get to work. Social security will inevitably be shut down. You will likely not get it anyway, nor will you get your money back that you paid into it. It's a piggy bank for conservatives.
This is great. Especially for a lot of us who served in the military and have worn out some of the cartilage in our knees from all the running, marching and whatnot. Maybe if this is approved fast enough, some of us may yet be able to re-enlist and get back into the fight. Hopefully though, the fight ends before then, meaning I can run around the neighborhood for exercise instead of running for my life in the desert.
Coming from a 21 year old kid who was forced out of the Army because my knee took too much punishment, this is pretty amazing news. Hopefully I'll be able to get something like this sooner than later.
This is an amazing thing. Will something similar to this work on degenerated disks in the spine?
I need to send this to a friend who is crippled by arthritis at 39 this will make his day.
I have never heard of people dying from osteo-arthritis. This does not mean that there will be more people to take social security. What it does mean is that there will be more able bodied seniors. This is not a social security problem if we do what we ought to do anyway, raise the age of retirement. There is nothing sacred about the age of 65 and it is now causing finincial strains that we cannot support, especially since we are running an insane debt that could lead to horrid economic break down.
In my profession (dancer), joint problems are unfortunately extremely common. Every month or so, someone I know is replacing something... This is good news.
Pain on my knee joint distract my field work. Hope so the Bioactive Nanogel soon i want to avail too.
I want to know if this will help people will rheumatoid arthritis. My wifes father has it and hasn't worked for 25 years. If this could help him get back to work it would save the goverment his whole disability payment. Plus the other 100,000+ people that cant work because of the diesase.
Great news as long as it can be produced in large quantities for an affordable cost. Get those elderly mobile again and back to work and keep humanity mobile that much longer!
YAY!!! now all your grandparents who always bake you cookies for breakfast, lunch and, dinner can bake longer, faster, and with more energy... or is it just the coffee...
Bad news. I just found out that this treatment will be impossible to perform in the vast numbers required for citizens. So it'll be available for only tax collectors and other representatives/agents of politics.
Yeah I just found out that this procedure will only be available on insurance plans with premiums of $1,000,000 a month or more.
I have heard a lot about stem cell research. These stem cells are supposed to be able to be grown into any kind of cell in your body. This includes brain cells and muscle cells. I am glad that stem cells are starting to be available to the public. Sadly it is very hard to acquire a sufficient number of stem cells. The process is very complex.
mibs9151: The gel also binds to one of the key growth factors for cartilage regeneration and keeps it localized in the damaged area. This stimulates the stem cells present in bone marrow that in turn activate type II collagen production naturally.
Not trying to be a butthole, but I don't think you really understood the article. The product doesnt contain stem cells, it activates stem cells you already have.
Also, mothers who have no medical need to bank cord blood for their babies can donate that cord blood to stem cell research. Hopefully, this method of obtaining stem cells will help to remove the stigma attached to the research. Since congress doesnt seem to be making any progress towards providing affordable health care, maybe we can use stem cells to cure everything and avoid the issue altogether.
I want to know if this will help people will rheumatoid arthritis. My wifes father has it and hasn't worked for 25 years.
If this could help him get back to work it would save the goverment his whole disability payment. Plus the other 100,000+ people that cant work because of the diesase.
I was in my early teens playing recreation (94') football and suffered from mild knee injuries. After going down for a rebound during basketball season I tore my cartilage, and after an arthroscopy the injury was made better, so I joined the US Navy. Now, I'm 32 years old and could benefit from this bioactive nanogel, in order to rebuild the missing cartilage....There's nothing wrong with walking, or surfing :)
I wonder if nanogel injections ar applicable to my grade 4 ankle joint chondromalacia. It would save me from a lot of pain and discomfort. Recently i had arthroscopy for my left ankle joint. Now i'm undergoing rehab to adjust after the operation, but it doesn't look promising.