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Biology of platelet-rich plasma and its clinical application in cartilage repair

Xie, X and Zhang, C and Tuan, RS (2014) Biology of platelet-rich plasma and its clinical application in cartilage repair. Arthritis Research and Therapy, 16 (1). ISSN 1478-6354

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Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is an autologous concentrated cocktail of growth factors and inflammatory mediators, and has been considered to be potentially effective for cartilage repair. In addition, the fibrinogen in PRP may be activated to form a fibrin matrix to fill cartilage lesions, fulfilling the initial requirements of physiological wound healing. The anabolic, anti-inflammatory and scaffolding effects of PRP based on laboratory investigations, animal studies, and clinical trials are reviewed here. In vitro, PRP is found to stimulate cell proliferation and cartilaginous matrix production by chondrocytes and adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), enhance matrix secretion by synoviocytes, mitigate IL-1β-induced inflammation, and provide a favorable substrate for MSCs. In preclinical studies, PRP has been used either as a gel to fill cartilage defects with variable results, or to slow the progression of arthritis in animal models with positive outcomes. Findings from current clinical trials suggest that PRP may have the potential to fill cartilage defects to enhance cartilage repair, attenuate symptoms of osteoarthritis and improve joint function, with an acceptable safety profile. Although current evidence appears to favor PRP over hyaluronan for the treatment of osteoarthritis, the efficacy of PRP therapy remains unpredictable owing to the highly heterogeneous nature of reported studies and the variable composition of the PRP preparations. Future studies are critical to elucidate the functional activity of individual PRP components in modulating specific pathogenic mechanisms. © 2014 Xie et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Xie, X
Zhang, C
Tuan, RSrst13@pitt.eduRST13
Date: 25 February 2014
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Arthritis Research and Therapy
Volume: 16
Number: 1
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1186/ar4493
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Orthopaedic Surgery
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1478-6354
Article Type: Review
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2016 20:36
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 16:56


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