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Biomaterials. 1999 Oct;20(20):1937-44.

Effects of chitosan on rat knee cartilages.

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Laboratoire de Recherches Orthop├ędiques, UPRES-A CNRS 7052, Paris, France.


The aim of this work is to study the effects of chitosan on rat knee cartilages. 0.2 ml of 0.1% chitosan solution pH = 6.9 were injected inside rat knees articular cavity. One, three and six weeks after injection, histological and histomorphometric studies were performed on undecalcified samples embedded in polymethylmetacrylate. Results show that after 1 and 6 weeks: (i) chitosan slows significantly (P < 0.005) the decrease in epiphyseal cartilage thicknesses and (ii) increases significantly articular cartilage chondrocyte densities (P < 0.002). However chitosan solution induces a proliferation of fibrous tissue with abundant fibroblasts, fibrocytes and monocytes inside the joint and this proliferation is still present after 6 weeks. This study suggests that chitosan could act on the growth of epiphyseal cartilage and wound healing of articular cartilage.

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