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Elucidating the Role of Joint Disuse in the Development of Osteoarthritis following Return to High-Impact Loading

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Technical Report,30 Sep 2016,29 Mar 2017

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University of Connecticut Farmington United States

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The studies completed within the last six months added the experimental components of joint loadings imparted through direct external impact or joint instability via ACL transection which also causes increased shear loading on articular surfaces. Recent experiments using animals at the proposed 20 week old age point revealed a lack of response to joint unloading of the articular cartilage tidemark interface of uncalcified and calcified cartilage. Joint unloading via hindlimb suspension is known to activate the tidemark within articular cartilage as well as ligament antheses, a proposed hallmark of disuse within this study. With this lack of response evident in our joint disuse model for 2 weeks of joint unloading for slightly older, but young adult animals, it will be important to distinguish this apparent age-related facet of cartilage response to joint unloading. Thereafter, the unloading-impact loading model will be exercised through the proposed variations in recovery time versus return to vigorous activities imparting joint impact loads. The results of our remaining studies may provide clinically relevant information toward establishing reasonable bounds on time to return to activities following periods of joint disuse. This may be particularly informative to individuals with occupations that require highter mechanical demands on joints.

Subject Categories:

  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Anatomy and Physiology

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