As part of ESA Education's Hands-on programmes, 4 students from Universtity of Minho and University of Porto, devised a cell biology and hypergravity experiment to investigate tendon cell biology in view of developing a new method of repairing tendons.
Musculoskeletal diseases are one of the leading causes of disability worldwide, with tendon injuries being responsible for substantial morbidity, pain and disability, affecting athletes, active working people and the elderly.
After injury, different therapeutic approaches can be used in the clinical setting. These include conservative treatments such as rest, mechanical conditioning, corticosteroids injection, etc. When conservative treatments fail or are not appropriate, surgical intervention is required.
The Achilles experiment aims to combine a bioactive and bioinstructive membrane with hypergravity stimulation to gain a better understanding of tendon cell biology and the potential development of a patch for tendon regeneration applications.