The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is an important intra-articular structure in the knee joint that prevents excessive anterior tibial translation and resists internal rotational loads. Its rupture is one of the most common injuries of the knee and about 100,000 ACL reconstructions are performed each year in the United States. The current techniques for reconstruction involve replacing the ACL with autografts, most commonly from the hamstrings or patellar tendons, though use of these grafts is associated with various drawbacks, the most prominent of which is donor site morbidity. Over the past 30 years, numerous prosthetic devices for ACL replacement have been made with a wide range of materials. However none of them have demonstrated positive long term results in vivo, and no such devices are currently approved by the FDA for clinical use. Failures of previous devices mostly originate from a lack of biocompatibility due to immunogenic particulation or from mechanical failures causing prosthetic laxity and knee instability as the result of creep or rupture by wear and fatigue.

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