The use of biologic therapies for the management of knee osteoarthritis (OA) has largely increased in recent years. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficiency and the therapeutic potential of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and autologous adipose tissue (AAT) injections as a treatment for knee OA. Sixty participants were enrolled in the study: 20 healthy ones and 40 with minimal to moderate knee OA (KL I-III). The OA patients were randomly assigned either to the PRP or to the AAT group. The PRP samples showed a low expression level of NF-κB-responsive gene CCL5 and high expression levels of classic inflammatory and TNF-l INF responses. The AAT injection product was prepared using a Lipogems device, and its regenerative potential as well as the ability for expansion of mesenchymal stem cells were tested in the cell culture conditions. The patient assessments were carried out five times. Significant improvement was observed regardless of the treatment method in the VAS, KOOS, WOMAC and IKDC 2000 subjective evaluations as well as in the functional parameters. Intra-articular injections of AAT or PRP improved pain, symptoms, quality of life and functional capacity with a comparable effectiveness in the patients with mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis.
Keywords: adipose-derived stem cells; autologous adipose tissue; knee osteoarthritis; platelet-rich plasma.