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J Biomed Mater Res A. 2015 Jan;103(1):84-90. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.35151. Epub 2014 Mar 20.

Bio-engineered synovial membrane to prevent tendon adhesions in rabbit flexor tendon model.

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Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Gazi University, Ankara, Turkey.


During tendon injuries, the tendon sheath is also damaged. This study aims to test effectiveness of engineered tendon synovial cell biomembrane on prevention of adhesions. Forty New Zealand Rabbits enrolled into four study groups. Engineered synovial sheath was produced by culturing cell suspension on fabricated collagen matrix membrane. Study groups were: tendon repair (group A), tendon repair zone covered with plane matrix (Group B), synovial suspension injection into the zone of repair over matrix (Group C), and biomembrane application (Group D). Biomechanical evaluations of tendon excursion, metacarpophalangeal and proximal interphalangeal joints range of motion, H&E and Alcian Blue with neutral red staining, and adhesion formation graded for histological assessments were studied. Ten non-operated extremities used as control. Tendon excursions and range of motions were significantly higher and close to control group for Group D, p < 0.05. Adhesion formation was not different among Groups C, D, and Control, p > 0.005. Hyaluronic acid synthesis was demonstrated at groups C and D at the zone of injury. Application of synovial cells into the tendon repair zone either by cell suspension or within a biomembrane significantly decreases the adhesion formation. Barrier effect of collagen matrix and restoration of hyaluronic acid synthesis can explain the possible mechanism of action.


adhesion formation; biomembrane; collagen matrix; synovial cell; tendon healing

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