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Macroporous 3D Scaffold with Self-Fitting Capability for Effectively Repairing Massive Rotator Cuff Tear

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journal contribution
posted on 23.04.2020, 17:34 by Liren Wang, Yuhao Kang, Sihao Chen, Xiumei Mo, Jia Jiang, Xiaoyu Yan, Tonghe Zhu, Jinzhong Zhao
The postoperative retear rate of direct repair of massive rotator cuff tear has risen up to 40% because of the dissatisfied tendon-to-bone healing and poor regenerative potential of remnant rotator cuff tissue. A biological scaffold that connects the remnant rotator cuff tissue and bone might be a promising substitute. In the present study, we have developed a macroporous three-dimensional scaffold poly­(ester-urethane)­urea (PEUU), with self-fitting capability employing thermally induced phase separation (TIPS) technique. The scaffold provides oriented connected macropores for cells migration, and promoted tendon-to-bone healing on the basis of surgical repair. The scaffolds were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, stress–strain test and cell biocompatibility study. In vitro studies exhibited that PEUU scaffold with suitable elastic mechanical properties can better support proliferation and migration of rabbit bone mesenchymal stem cells (RBMSCs). After three months postreconstruction of massive rotator cuff tear in a rabbit model using PEUU scaffold, there was complete regeneration of rotator cuff with physical tendon-to-bone interface and continuous tendon tissue, as observed from histological analysis. Further, biomechanical testing demonstrated that rotator cuff induced by PEUU scaffold had no significant difference as compared to normal rotator cuff. This macroporous, mechanically matched scaffold is potentially suitable for the application in massive rotator cuff repair. In conclusion, this study demonstrates the high efficiency of the macroporous 3D scaffold with self-fitting capability in facilitating rotator cuff regeneration.