Tissue Development

Current attempts at in vitro chondrogenic differentiation of MSCs have their basis in knowledge gained from developmental cartilage formation and studies on cartilage homeostasis and function, and involve soluble factors, mechanical stimulation, and ECM components. Ideal conditions for the tissue engineering of functional articular cartilage have not yet been developed, thus understanding more about the development of this tissue may give us insight into We combine the use the experimental embryological techniques such as the high density micromass system with undifferentiated limb bud mesenchyme of the chick and mouse embryo and genetic models to study the effects of growth factors, extracellular matrix molecules and physical factors such as tension upon chondrogenesis and the development of joint tissues.

Erg and collagen II expression profiles in an E 13.5 mouse embryo limb. In-situ hybridization was preformed using Dig-labelled probes and either TRITC or FITC-conjugated secondary antibodies. Collagen II expression (red) is restricted to epiphyseal cartilage fated to undergo endochondral ossification, while GDF5 (blue) is restricted to the intermediate zone of the joint interzone which will give rise to articular cartilage and the soft tissues surrounding the joint.

Research Personnel

  • Peter G Alexander
  • Thomas P Lozito