Nanotechnology Can Replace Torn Knee Ligaments
Ashley Allen / 3 years ago
A torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), a debilitating sports injury to the fibrous strand of hard tissue that connects the femur to the tibia through the knee, used to mean undergoing a reparative tendon graft that left the sufferer in constant pain and at risk of damaging the knee further. However, work at Northwestern University might make such difficulties a thing of the past.
Scientists at Northwestern have developed a replacement ligament containing nanotechnology that combines calcium nanocrystals, imitating natural bone tissue, a porous biomaterial, and polyester fibres that can be connected to the femur and tibia to replace the damaged ACL. The artificial ligament requires no surgical graft, with the implant and the bone naturally integrating, acting more like a real ligament.
The procedure has only been tested on animals so far, but Northwestern University hope that, with further trials and study, it will soon be ready to help people with ACL injuries.