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Making cartilage grow and sponges disappear

„Innovatives 3D-Design von Biomaterialien für die Regenerative Medizin“, Matricel, Herzogenrath, Germany


Ingo Heschel, managing director of Matricel in Herzogenrath, has developed small collagen sponges for the treatment of cartilage degeneration. The small white cotton wool cylinders have the function of a matrix, which is colonised with the body’s own cartilage cells and then inserted into a damaged knee joint, for example. There the matrix will disintegrate, the body’s own cells will grow and the knee will repair itself. In contrast to other collagen sponges, cells can permeate the Matricel matrix well and evenly. This is the result of a special design: Small ice fingers are pushed through the sponge leaving hollow spaces, which create enough space for the growing cartilage cells between the remaining walls and the individual connecting fibres. “While the body slowly breaks down and eliminates the matrix, the body’s own cells can even replace it completely” says Matricel’s managing director. Almost 3,000 patients have already received bio-materials for cartilage regeneration in the knee joint via Matricel. In the medium term the scientist, who holds a doctorate in engineering, can also imagine cultivating nerve and muscle tissue as well as replacing bones and skin. Different development projects by Matricel with clinical partners, for example at the RWTH Aachen University and the University Bielefeld are currently researching the realistic perspectives of such procedures.

Overview of concepts:


Decoding the sense of smell

„Vom Riechrezeptor zum Biosensor“, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Lehrstuhl für Zellphysiologie, Bochum, Germany


Neck vertebrae fixation without screws

„Crano - eine Cervikalorthese“, Julia Hanisch and Timo Wurz, Hochschule für Gestaltung in Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany


Operating brains quickly

„LAXAR OP-System“, Andrea Feuerabend and Friedemann Schreiber, Hochschule für Gestaltung Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany


Natural contraception via skin reading

„ovu`love“, Wilddesign, Gelsenkirchen, Germany, and GEO-Design, Tokyo, Japan


Making cartilage grow and sponges disappear

„Innovatives 3D-Design von Biomaterialien für die Regenerative Medizin“, Matricel, Herzogenrath, Germany


Testing babies’ hearing

„OtoRead”, DESIGN/NORD, Denmark, and Interacoustics A/S, Denmark


Increased sensation with the lower leg prosthesis

„Otto Bock Harmony System“, Otto Bock Healthcare GmbH, Duderstadt, Germany


Memory aid for dementia sufferers

„Senso. My Personal Lifebook“, Pelin Celik and Pilotfish GmbH, Munich, Germany


Greater quality of life for pain patients

„Lockout System”, Ing. Erich Pfeiffer GmbH, Radolfzell, Germany, and item design & development, Ascheberg, Germany


Surgeons in cyberspace

„Sphere – ein OP Szenario“, piu products, Essen, Germany


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