Cartilage Degeneration Market: Overview
Cartilage is the tough, complex but flexible living tissue that covers the bony surface of joints. Articular cartilage, fibro cartilage and elastic cartilage are the three different types of cartilage present in the body. Articular cartilage is the one which covers joint surfaces, elastic cartilage is found in the outer ear and fibro cartilage is present in the vertebral disc and knee meniscus. All these three cartilages in the body are distinguished by elasticity, structure, and strength. It is responsible for providing shock absorption, and thus enables the joints to bear the weight associated with the daily activities as well as in various kinds of sports.
The most common type of cartilage damage is that of articular cartilage, and may be caused due to injury or degeneration. Articular cartilage cells may heal depending on the extent of degeneration, and location of injury, however only in cases where an injury penetrates into the bone beneath the cartilage. Self healing capacity of the cartilage reduces since the cartilage has no direct blood supply, so little or no capacity to repair itself.
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Cartilage is also responsible for providing shape and support to other parts of the body, such as nose, ears, and windpipe. Cartilage also provides protection to the bones by preventing them from friction against each other. Pain and restricted movement is observed in cases of injured, inflamed or damaged cartilage including joint deformity in some cases. There are several causes for cartilage problems which include genetic, trauma (injuries), nutritional, mal alignment and meniscus tear. According to a medical center in the U.S., more than 12 million people visit doctors due to knee pain each year, 50 % of them are diagnosed with cartilage damage.
Cartilage Degeneration Market: Treatment Trends
Osteoarthritis is a leading cause of cartilage damage. Osteoarthritis, which is also known as degenerative joint disease is characterized by a loss of cartilage, the body’s attempt to repair the cartilage and, ultimately the destruction of the bone underneath the articular cartilage. Since the cartilage tissue does not contain blood vessels or nerves, treating this degeneration pose a challenge and have a limited ability to re-grow. Various treatment options for cartilage degeneration, such as, arthroscopy, drug therapy and joint replacement, have yielded mixed results of regenerating the damaged cartilage.
Medical researchers are also conducting various clinical studies in the U.S. of innovative stem cell therapy for repairing knee cartilage degenerated due to causes such as trauma, aging, or even arthritis. Cartistem is one such example by Rush University Medical Center which is developed from mesenchymal stem cells derived from allogenic umbilical cord blood. This Cartistem is administered surgically into the area of cartilage damage following an arthroscopic surgery. Studies and research on exploring various biological solutions to treat cartilage degeneration is currently one of the fastest growing area of research and development.
Cartilage Degeneration Market: Segmentation
The global cartilage degeneration market can be segmented based on therapy type and pipeline assessment on the basis of target site, molecule type, mechanism of action and route of administration. Therapy type can be classified as monotherapy or combined therapeutics. Various drug molecules in pipeline for cartilage degeneration include sprifermin, chondrogen, and MSB-CAR-001 amongst various others. The alternative for the drug treatment includes minimal invasive procedures such as arthroscopy. The other regeneration procedures include autologus chonrocyte transplantation, cell based cartilage resurfacing, meniscus transplant, micro fracture, osteochondral allograft, and mosaicplasty.
Calzada Limited, Merck KGaA, Mesoblast Limited, Sanofi and Thrasos, Inc., are some of the key players contributing to the global cartilage degeneration market.
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