STATIC AND DYNAMIC CHARACTERIZATION OF THE LIGAMENT SUBJECTED TO ALTERNATIVE WOUND HEALING
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The purpose of this study is to test the biomechanical properties of the rat (Rattus norvegicus) medial collateral ligament (MCL) following knee surgery and healing with the aid of Insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) gene therapy treatments. The research work consisted of three stages: First, the design of a novel de novo technique that captures both static and dynamic characteristics of the knee ligament. Second, validation tests of this experimental apparatus were performed to show the repeatability of the measurements. Third, we measured the static characteristics, such as stiffness and strength and the dynamic characteristics, such as frequency and operating deflection shapes, of newly healed ligaments. Based on our analysis, surgically disrupted ligaments treated with the scAAV2-IGF-1b gene therapy treatment for three weeks displayed increases in ligament strength and toughness, suggesting that IGF-1b gene therapy may be a viable post-surgical treatment countermeasure for ligament repair.