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Researchers use magnetic fields and hydrogels to grow new cartilage in incredible breakthrough

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Illustration: © Global look Press / Oleksiy Maksymenko /
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The team’s hydrogel solution (along with medicinal objects suspended in it) is poured into the damaged area before being exposed to ultraviolet light which locks it in place. The magnetic solution is then slowly diffused out of the body over time. 

The team successfully managed to recreate articular cartilage, which is located at critical joints in the human body like the knees and elbows, a key source of injuries among professional athletes. “By locking cells and other drug delivering agents in place via magneto-patterning, we are able to start tissues on the appropriate trajectory to produce better implants for cartilage repair,” Mauck said. 

For now, the studies were conducted in laboratory, ‘in vitro’ settings, but they mark the latest step towards more advanced regenerative medicine technologies without the need for multiple, expensive and invasive surgeries. 

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