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Intermittent applied mechanical loading induces subchondral bone thickening that may be intensified locally by contiguous articular cartilage lesions

Poulet, B., de Souza, R., Kent, A.V., Saxon, L., Barker, O., Wilson, A., Chang, Y-M, Cake, M. and Pitsillides, A.A. (2015) Intermittent applied mechanical loading induces subchondral bone thickening that may be intensified locally by contiguous articular cartilage lesions. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage, 23 (6). pp. 940-948.

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Abstract

Objectives: Changes in subchondral bone (SCB) and cross-talk with articular cartilage (AC) have been linked to osteoarthritis (OA). Using micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) this study: (1) examines changes in SCB architecture in a non-invasive loading mouse model in which focal AC lesions are induced selectively in the lateral femur, and (2) determines any modifications in the contralateral knee, linked to changes in gait, which might complicate use of this limb as an internal control. Methods: Right knee joints of CBA mice were loaded: once with 2weeks of habitual use (n=7), for 2weeks (n=8) or for 5weeks (n=5). Both left (contralateral) and right (loaded) knees were micro-CT scanned and the SCB and trabecular bone analysed. Gait analysis was also performed. Results: These analyses showed a significant increase in SCB thickness in the lateral compartments in joints loaded for 5weeks, which was most marked in the lateral femur; the contralateral non-loaded knee also showed transient SCB thickening (loaded once and repetitively). Epiphyseal trabecular bone BV/TV and trabecular thickness were also increased in the lateral compartments after 5 weeks of loading, and in all joint compartments in the contralateral knee. Gait analysis showed that applied loading only affected gait in the contralateral himd-limb in all groups of mice from the second week after the first loading episode. Conclusions: These data indicate a spatial link between SCB thickening and AC lesions following mechanical trauma, and the clear limitations associated with the use of contralateral joints as controls in such OA models, and perhaps in OA diagnosis.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Publisher: W. B. Saunders Co., Ltd.
Copyright: © 2015 The Authors.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/25584
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