Nanoscale Surface Modifications of Medical Implants for Cartilage Tissue Repair and Regeneration

MF Griffin 1, *, M Szarko2, A Seifailan1, PE Butler1, 3
1 University College London Centre for Nanotechnology & Regenerative Medicine, UCL Division of Surgery & Interventional Science, London, UK
2 Anatomy Department, St Georges Hospital, London, UK
3 Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust Hospital, London, UK

Article Metrics

CrossRef Citations:
Total Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 972
Abstract HTML Views: 463
PDF Downloads: 304
ePub Downloads: 229
Total Views/Downloads: 1968
Unique Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 635
Abstract HTML Views: 304
PDF Downloads: 213
ePub Downloads: 174
Total Views/Downloads: 1326

Creative Commons License
© Griffin et al.; Licensee Bentham Open

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the University College London, Royal Free Hospital, London, UK; Tel/Fax: 07825085963; E-mail:



Natural cartilage regeneration is limited after trauma or degenerative processes. Due to the clinical challenge of reconstruction of articular cartilage, research into developing biomaterials to support cartilage regeneration have evolved. The structural architecture of composition of the cartilage extracellular matrix (ECM) is vital in guiding cell adhesion, migration and formation of cartilage. Current technologies have tried to mimic the cell’s nanoscale microenvironment to improve implants to improve cartilage tissue repair.


This review evaluates nanoscale techniques used to modify the implant surface for cartilage regeneration.


The surface of biomaterial is a vital parameter to guide cell adhesion and consequently allow for the formation of ECM and allow for tissue repair. By providing nanosized cues on the surface in the form of a nanotopography or nanosized molecules, allows for better control of cell behaviour and regeneration of cartilage. Chemical, physical and lithography techniques have all been explored for modifying the nanoscale surface of implants to promote chondrocyte adhesion and ECM formation.


Future studies are needed to further establish the optimal nanoscale modification of implants for cartilage tissue regeneration.

Keywords: Cartilage, Nanoscale, Nanotechnology, Nanotopography, Surface modification, Tissue-engineering.