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Evaluation of Biological Protein-Based Collagen Scaffolds in Cartilage and Musculoskeletal Tissue Engineering- A Systematic Review of the Literature

[ Vol. 7 , Issue. 4 ]


Pouya Mafi, Sandip Hindocha, Rafi Mafi and Wasim S. Khan   Pages 302 - 309 ( 8 )


The term tissue engineering is the technology that combines cells, engineering and biological/synthetic material in order to repair, replace or regenerate biological tissues such as bone, muscle, tendons and cartilage. The major human applications of tissue engineering are: skin, bone, cartilage, corneas, blood vessels, left mainstem bronchus and urinary structures. In this systematic review several criteria were identified as the most desirable characteristics of an ideal scaffold. These state that an ideal scaffolds needs to be biodegradable, possess mechanical strength, be highly porous, biocompatible, non-cytotoxic, non antigentic, stuitable for cell attachment, proliferation and differentiation, flexible and elastic, three dimensional, osteoconductive and support the transport of nutrients and metabolic waste. Subsequently, studies reporting on the various advantages and disadvantages of using collagen based scaffolds in musculoskeletal and cartilage tissue engineering were identified. The purpose of this review is to 1) provide a list of ideal characteristics of a scaffold as identified in the literature 2) identify different types of biological protein-based collagen scaffolds used in musculoskeletal and cartilage tissue engineering 3) assess how many of the criteria each scaffold type meets 4) weigh different scaffolds against each other according to their relative properties and shortcomings. The rationale behind this approach is that the ideal scaffold material has not yet been identified. Hence, this review will define how many of the identified ideal characteristics are fulfilled by natural collagen-based scaffolds and address the shortcomings of its use as found in the literature.


Cartilage, collagen, scaffold, stem cells, tissue engineering, Protein-Based, proliferation, healing, synthetic and biological scaffolds, prostheses


Department of Plastic Surgery, Whiston General Hospital, Liverpool, L355DR, UK.

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