Over 1.5 million days of work are lost annually due to hand tendon injuries in the UK. Cases where tendons detach from bones present a significant clinical challenge, as approaches to anchoring soft-to-hard tissues are poorly understood and adequate healing is rarely achieved. The flexor tendon 'enthesis', where the tendons of the muscles responsible for bending the fingers anchor to the bone, is prone to injury and does not repair well. Current treatment methods can lead to problems such as further detachment or complications resulting in loss of finger motion.
The funding awarded from Orthopaedic Research UK will be used to support a 3-year PhD studentship in the Paxton Lab with the main focus of developing a novel research tool – an in vitro model of the flexor-tendon-to-bone enthesis.