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Stem Cells International
Volume 2012, Article ID 438125, 6 pages
Review Article

Ligament Tissue Engineering and Its Potential Role in Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction

1Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, Stepping Hill Hospital, Stockport NHS Foundation Trust, Stockport, SK2 7JE, UK
2Materials Science Centre, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PT, UK
3Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital and Institute of Orthopaedics and Musculoskeletal Science, University College London, Stanmore, Middlesex, HA7 4LP, UK

Received 15 October 2011; Accepted 15 November 2011

Academic Editor: Umile Longo

Copyright © 2012 E. W. Yates 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.


Tissue engineering is an emerging discipline that combines the principle of science and engineering. It offers an unlimited source of natural tissue substitutes and by using appropriate cells, biomimetic scaffolds, and advanced bioreactors, it is possible that tissue engineering could be implemented in the repair and regeneration of tissue such as bone, cartilage, tendon, and ligament. Whilst repair and regeneration of ligament tissue has been demonstrated in animal studies, further research is needed to improve the biomechanical properties of the engineered ligament if it is to play an important part in the future of human ligament reconstruction surgery. We evaluate the current literature on ligament tissue engineering and its role in anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction.