Wednesday 23 January 2019

Irish scientists land €3m grant to repair human joints through 3D printing

Stock photo: Getty Images
Stock photo: Getty Images
Gareth Morgan

Gareth Morgan

Scientists will combine 3D printing with stem cell and gene therapy technologies to repair joints in a groundbreaking new way.

Professor Fergal O'Brien has been awarded a highly prestigious €3m European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant for a research project that aims to revolutionise the treatment of damaged articular joints such as the knee or ankle.

His work will develop a scaffold from bio-material, capable of repairing bone and cartilage. The body's own cells will be allowed to integrate with this to repair a much greater area of damaged tissue.

The work aims to transform the way articular cartilage injuries are treated. It could help address common health issues from a range of chronic conditions such as injuries that lead to osteoarthritis.

Prof O'Brien works with the RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland) Department of Anatomy and AMBER, the Science Foundation Ireland-funded materials science research centre.

The award is one of just three ERC Advanced Grants being made to Irish Institutions this year.

Irish Independent

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