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Stem Cells International
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 517165, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/517165
Review Article

Scaffolds in Tendon Tissue Engineering

1Department of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery, Campus Bio-Medico University, Via Alvaro del Portillo, 200, 00128 Rome, Italy
2Centre for Sports and Exercise Medicine, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, Mile End Campus, 275 Bancroft Road, London E1 4DG, UK

Received 15 October 2011; Accepted 18 October 2011

Academic Editor: Wasim S. Khan

Copyright © 2012 Umile Giuseppe Longo 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.

Abstract

Tissue engineering techniques using novel scaffold materials offer potential alternatives for managing tendon disorders. Tissue engineering strategies to improve tendon repair healing include the use of scaffolds, growth factors, cell seeding, or a combination of these approaches. Scaffolds have been the most common strategy investigated to date. Available scaffolds for tendon repair include both biological scaffolds, obtained from mammalian tissues, and synthetic scaffolds, manufactured from chemical compounds. Preliminary studies support the idea that scaffolds can provide an alternative for tendon augmentation with an enormous therapeutic potential. However, available data are lacking to allow definitive conclusion on the use of scaffolds for tendon augmentation. We review the current basic science and clinical understanding in the field of scaffolds and tissue engineering for tendon repair.