Scripps Health Receives $7.6M Grant to Regrow Knee Cartilage

Dr. Darryl DLima. Photo courtesy of Scripps Health

Scripps Health announced today it has received a $7.6 million grant to study the repair and regeneration of knee cartilage, and the underlying bone defects and lesions caused by osteoarthritis.

The award from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine will support ongoing stem cell research by the Shiley Center for Orthopedic Research and Education at Scripps Clinic.

The funding provided by CIRM is essential to the development and support of the research we are doing with regard to tissue regeneration at Scripps, said Dr. Darryl DLima, the Scripps Health director of orthopedic research. With this grant we plan to continue our progress in this field and move toward clinical trials within the next three years.

Scripps researchers are studying a cell therapy that combines stem cells with a natural scaffold made of water-based gels to support the repair of cartilage and bone defects. Such defects, if left untreated, are a major factor in contributing to early osteoarthritis in patients younger than 55.

Caused by the deterioration of cartilage between joints, osteoarthritis affects more than 27 million people in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Almost all current strategies to repair knee cartilage involve the removal of healthy cartilage and tissue around the lesion and the creation of artificial defects in the joint to facilitate further treatment or implantation. However, for younger patients with severe arthritis or impending arthritis, there is no treatment that can prevent, cure or even slow the progression of this disease.

Scientists with The Scripps Research Institute and Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute are assisting with the project.

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Scripps Health Receives $7.6M Grant to Regrow Knee Cartilage

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