Technologies for Treating Cartilage Tissue Loss Following Traumatic Injury

Period of Performance: 09/11/2015 - 02/15/2018


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

SpherIngenics, Inc.
800 East Leigh Street
Richmond, VA 23219
Firm POC
Principal Investigator


Traumatic injuries to the head and neck region comprise as much as 30 percent of all combat injuries observed today. These injuries often involve multiple tissues including dermal, muscle, cartilage and bone. This work aims to address this critical need by treating a composite tissue injury model in the ear. We will use an alginate microbead cell delivery system previously demonstrated to support cartilage regeneration in vivo to assess a full thickness defect in the ear comprised of skin, muscle, cartilage, and fat tissue. We will first optimize the properties of the alginate microbead to support cell differentiation down the different necessary lineages associated with the composite injury and increase therapeutic growth factor production by the cells. Second, we will develop a delivery mechanism to optimize cell viability upon injection. With an optimized delivery system for cells, we will then incorporate our microbeads into a polymer scaffold in a layered fashion and implant the construct into a full thickness defect in the ear. By the end of this research program, we will have developed a platform technology for cell based therapies for traumatic injuries that will have potential uses in both the military and civilian markets.