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Am J Rhinol Allergy. 2010 Jan-Feb;24(1):e19-22. doi: 10.2500/ajra.2010.24.3433.

Growth of human septal chondrocytes in fibrin scaffolds.

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  • 1Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, San Diego, California, USA.



Tissue engineering of nasal septal cartilage has been the focus of research owing to its superior structural rigidity and ease of harvest. In vitro constructs formed from septal chondrocytes using fibrin glue within a polyglycolic acid (PGA) scaffold have been shown to be viable, but their cellular growth and expression of differentiated features still have not been quantified. In this study, we evaluated cellular proliferation and production of cartilaginous extracellular matrix (ECM) components in fibrin glue preparations within a PGA scaffold.


Human chondrocytes were expanded for one passage in monolayer in culture medium. The cells were then grown in (1) fibrinogen, (1/2)x-thrombin, (1/2)x (F/2:T/2); (2) fibrinogen, 1/10x-thrombin, 1/10x (F/10:T/10); (3) fibrinogen, 1x-thrombin, 1/100x (F/1:T/100).


Cellular proliferation and glycosaminoglycan (GAG) production per cell were highest in the F/2:T/2 preparations. Greater proliferation was seen in chondrocyte-fibrin composites seeded onto the PGA scaffold when compared with chondrocytes seeded onto the PGA scaffold alone. No significant difference in GAG production was seen.


The addition of fibrin glue to chondrocytes seeded onto a PGA scaffold results in increased cellular proliferation while maintaining production of ECM components. Long-term stable fibrin gels in combination with PGA scaffolds may facilitate generation of cartilaginous tissue for use in reconstructive surgery.

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