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International Journal of Biomaterials
Volume 2012, Article ID 582685, 9 pages
Research Article

Polyvinyl Alcohol Hydrogel Irradiated and Acetalized for Osteochondral Defect Repair: Mechanical, Chemical, and Histological Evaluation after Implantation in Rat Knees

1Orthopaedic Biomaterials Laboratory, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Rua Tessália Vieira de Camargo, no. 126, Cidade Universitária “Zeferino Vaz”, 13083-887 Campinas, SP, Brazil
2Department of Plastic, Technical College Campinas (COTUCA), University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-887 Campinas, SP, Brazil

Received 10 March 2012; Revised 20 August 2012; Accepted 12 September 2012

Academic Editor: Frank Feyerabend

Copyright © 2012 N. A. Batista et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA) hydrogel plugs were implanted in artificial osteochondral defects on the trochlear groove of rat knees. After 0, 3, 6, 12, and 24 weeks of followup, samples containing the implants were mechanically evaluated by creep indentation test, chemically, and histologically by optical microscopy. The mechanical test pointed towards an increase of the implant creep modulus and the chemical analysis exhibited an increasing concentration of calcium and phosphorus within the implants over time. Optical microscopy showed no foreign body reaction and revealed formation, differentiation, and maintenance of new tissue at the defect/implant interface. The absence of implant wear indicated that the natural articular lubrication process was not disturbed by the implant. The performance of the irradiated and acetalized PVA was considered satisfactory for the proposed application.