The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies
The intra-articular administration of nanoparticles for enhanced drug delivery, imaging or as a primary therapeutic has sparked great interest in the scientific community.
We have investigated the effects of bare gold nanoparticles using ex and in vivo models of porcine synovial membrane highlighting their short term effect in the articular environment and some potential concerns associated with use of this technology. Continued work will concentrate on the particles' role in inflammation and explore potential clinical applications in diagnosis and treatment of joint disease. Our use of ex vivo synovial models has furthered highlighted the need for more refined physiologic model alternatives.
A collaborative effort is currently underway to explore the potential of whole organ modelling on the basis of isolated limb perfusion of post mortem abattoir tissue samples. If successful, this approach would not only allow continuation of current joint related research in a more ethical context but also create new opportunities. Validation of such a model is expected to facilitate future advanced imaging studies of acute joint inflammation and inflammatory cell recruitment including the use of bio-activatable probes in a large animal model.