Advances in Tissue Engineering Approaches to Treatment of Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: Cells and Polymeric Scaffolds for Nucleus Pulposus Regeneration

  • Jeremy J. Mercuri
  • Dan T. SimionescuEmail author
Part of the Advances in Polymer Science book series (POLYMER, volume 247)


Synthetic polymers and biopolymers are extensively used within the field of tissue engineering. Some common examples of these materials include polylactic acid, polyglycolic acid, collagen, elastin, and various forms of polysaccharides. In terms of application, these materials are primarily used in the construction of scaffolds that aid in the local delivery of cells and growth factors, and in many cases fulfill a mechanical role in supporting physiologic loads that would otherwise be supported by a healthy tissue. In this review we will examine the development of scaffolds derived from biopolymers and their use with various cell types in the context of tissue engineering the nucleus pulposus of the intervertebral disc.


Biomaterials Biopolymers Intervertebral disc Intervertebral disc degeneration Nucleus pulposus Tissue engineering 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BioengineeringClemson UniversityClemsonUSA
  2. 2.Department of BioengineeringClemson UniversityClemsonUSA

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