Knee osteoarthritis (OA) after partial or total meniscectomy is a prevalent issue that patients must face. Various methods of replacing meniscal tissue have been studied to avoid this progression, including meniscal allograft transplantation, meniscal scaffolds, and synthetic meniscus replacement. Studies have shown that meniscal scaffolds may improve symptoms but have not been shown to prevent progression of OA. Recently, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been proposed as a possible biological therapy for meniscal regeneration. Several animal studies and 1 human study have evaluated the effect of transplanting MSCs into the knee joint after partial meniscectomy. The purpose of this review was to assess the outcomes of intra-articular transplantation of MSCs on meniscal regeneration in animals and humans after partial meniscectomy. Limited results from animal studies suggest that there is some potential for intra-articular injection of MSCs for the regeneration of meniscal tissue. However, further studies are necessary to determine the quality of regenerated meniscal tissue through histological and biomechanical testing.
- meniscal regeneration
- mesenchymal stem cells