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Oct 18, 2019

Humans have salamander-like ability to regrow cartilage in joints

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Contrary to popular belief, cartilage in human joints can repair itself through a process similar to that used by creatures such as salamanders and zebrafish to regenerate limbs, researchers at Duke Health found.

Publishing online Oct. 9 in the journal Science Advances, the researchers identified a mechanism for cartilage repair that appears to be more robust in ankle joints and less so in hips. The finding could potentially lead to treatments for osteoarthritis, the most common joint disorder in the world.

“We believe that an understanding of this ‘salamander-like’ regenerative capacity in humans, and the critically missing components of this regulatory circuit, could provide the foundation for new approaches to repair joint tissues and possibly whole human limbs,” said senior author Virginia Byers Kraus, M.D., Ph.D., a professor in the departments of Medicine, Pathology and Orthopedic Surgery at Duke.

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