bone and cartilage samples alive for eight weeks

For the study repair and regeneration of abnormalities, disorders or diseases in bones and cartilage, it is of vital importance that in addition to research on cell level, the influence of surrounding tissues is also studied. This is the main conclusion of a study into the regeneration of bone and cartilage, to which LifeTec Group contributed. LifeTec Group developed a platform enabling medical scientists to keep bone and cartilage samples alive for up to eight weeks (under physiological circumstances). This allows for the testing of therapies / biomaterials in a setting that imitates the situation inside the body as closely as possible. 

influence of surrounding tissues is largely ignored

How will bone respond to a new type of implant? Will an alternative drug have the desired effect on cartilage regeneration? Current studies into cartilage and bone regeneration mainly focus on cell level, while the influence of surrounding tissues is largely ignored. Research into the regeneration of bone and cartilage has shown that testing new medication and therapies for regeneration can be done more effectively if the surrounding tissues are also taken into account. That way, treatment methods can be tested in an environment that is to a large extent similar to the situation / environment inside the body.

“When you’re testing, you want a situation that is as relevant as possible. We consider the presence of those surrounding tissues of great importance because it most resembles the situation inside the body.”

These are the words of Linda Kock, project manager at LifeTec Group and co-author of the recently published article. 

  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
  • LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform
    LifeTec Group | Osteochondral Platform

Osteochondral Platform

In order to study in presence of the surrounding tissue it’s important to be able to keep it alive for a while. “And we managed to do just that,” says Kock proudly.

LifeTec Group developed the Osteochondral Platform for keeping osteochondral biopsies alive and healthy for up to 8 weeks. Kock: “We take a piece of tissue from a slaughterhouse knee joint. It’s a biopsy sample consisting of bone with a layer of cartilage. Then we separate the bone from the cartilage, but the sample itself remains intact because we place a ring around it precisely where the bone turns into cartilage. That way we create two isolated environments.”

The Osteochondral Platform designed by LifeTec Group imitates the original physical situation in which only ‘internal communication’ is possible between the cartilage and the bone. Kock explains: “Cartilage and bone both keep their distinctive characteristics that way. It allows us to study regenerative therapies for cartilage and bone in a model that is translational to the in vivo situation.”

Screening platform

The platform is already in use as a screening platform for clients who want to test materials or drugs for repairing defects in cartilage and/or bone. Kock: “The platform allows them to determine fast which treatments or therapies look promising and which do not, without the need for extensive animal testing. They can test multiple conditions in parallel and select the interesting ‘candidates’ and take them into the preclinical phase. So the advantage is that the platform saves them time, effort and money.” It may bring the solution for curing diseases like arthrosis a little closer. “It would be really wonderful if we at LifeTec Group could contribute to that.”

Relevant links and background information:

if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact Linda Kock:

Head of Research
Linda Kock
Call at +31 (0)40 298 93 93 or e-mail us

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