3D BIOPRINTED PERSONALISED SCAFFOLDS FOR TISSUE REGENERATION OF ANKLE JOINT
Tendinopathies and osteoarthritis (OA) are extremely common and these injuries associate with high health and socioeconomic costs, long-term postoperative rehabilitation, and loss of productivity. To date, none of the existing surgical or non-surgical alternatives have provided a successful long-term effect, and often the treated tissues do not restore their complete strength and functionality.
To fill the critical gap of proper treatments TRiAnkle proposes to develop 3D bioprinted scaffolds based on collagen and gelatine, functionalised with stem cells and/or nanoencapsulated regenerative factors. The surgical implantation of these new functionalised biomaterials will enable the targeted delivery of the mentioned biologically active agents to promote cell growth and differentiation to enable better and faster regeneration of injured collagen-rich tissues like articular cartilage, ligament and tendon of the ankle. Two case-studies will be implemented: the partial rupture (>50%) of Achilles tendon and osteochondral cartilage injuries, which will serve as a technological platform to deliver new regenerative therapies for any other articular, tendinous or ligament diseases of weight-bearing joints.
By achieving this goal, TRiAnkle will enable, in comparison with current surgical treatments:
– To increase by 10-15% of the ankle joints functionality recovery ratios due to the presence of pro-regenerative components that promote the healing process decreasing also the risk of re-rupture or recidivation.
– To reduce the recovery time and the associated healthcare costs up to 50% due to the use of scaffolds that mimic the natural structure and mechanical properties of joint tissues.
TRiAnkle will be implemented by a multidisciplinary team made up of biomaterial production companies, manufacturing technologies experts, material engineers, preclinical validation centers, healthcare professionals, patients associations and experts in ethical, regulatory and exploitation.
Leitat Budget: 713,750€
Financial Framework: HORIZON 2020
Contract number: 952981
Start Date: 01/01/2021
End Date: 31/12/2024
Main role & contribution in the project:
- 3D BIOPRINTING OF COMBINED THERAPIES: LEITAT will carry out activities for the preparation of scaffolds with cells and/or growth factors, and the loading and viable shipping of cell laden scaffolds suitable for cell transplantation without affecting the cell properties and characteristics;
- PRE-CLINICAL IN VIVO STUDIES: LEITAT will coordinate the preclinical in vivo studies performed in animal models in order to evaluate the tendon and articular cartilage regeneration after 3D bioprinted implants transplantation;
- Leitat will participate in the COMUNICATION, DISSEMINATION AND NETWORKING WITH OTHER PROJECTS
MANUFACTURING, EXPLOITATION, P&R STRATEGY AND REGULATION, by coordinating a workshop for specialists and the general public.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation framework programme under the Grant Agreement #952981