Visual histological grading system for the evaluation of in vitro-generated neocartilage

Grogan, Shawn Patrick; Barbero, Andrea; Winkelmann, Verena; Rieser, Franz; Fitzsimmons, James S; O'Driscoll, Shawn; Martin, Ivan; Mainil-Varlet, Pierre (2006). Visual histological grading system for the evaluation of in vitro-generated neocartilage. Tissue engineering, 12(8), pp. 2141-9. Larchmont, N.Y.: Mary Ann Liebert 10.1089/ten.2006.12.2141

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Here we present the development of a visual evaluation system for routine assessment of in vitro-engineered cartilaginous tissue. Neocartilage was produced by culturing human articular chondrocytes in pellet culture systems or in a scaffold-free bioreactor system. All engineered tissues were embedded in paraffin and were sectioned and stained with Safranin O-fast green. The evaluation of each sample was broken into 3 categories (uniformity and intensity of Safranin O stain, distance between cells/amount of matrix produced, and cell morphology), and each category had 4 components with a score ranging from 0 to 3. Three observers evaluated each sample, and the new system was independently tested against an objective computer-based histomorphometry system. Pellets were also assessed biochemically for glycosaminoglycan (GAG) content. Pellet histology scores correlated significantly with GAG contents and were in agreement with the computer-based histomorphometry system. This system allows a valid and rapid assessment of in vitro-generated cartilaginous tissue that has a relevant association with objective parameters indicative of cartilage quality.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Pathology

UniBE Contributor:

Grogan, Shawn; Winkelmann Hirschi, Verena and Mainil, Pierre






Mary Ann Liebert




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:48

Last Modified:

06 Dec 2013 13:42

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Web of Science ID:


URI: (FactScience: 2999)

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