A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Eastern Finland, showed that changes in the flow of interstitial fluid in the articular cartilage can be indicators of osteoarthritis.
Researchers led by Janne Mäkelä focused on structural and functional changes in the articular cartilage at various stages of osteoarthritis. They used a method of finite element modeling, combined with data on the structural and functional changes in the samples of articular cartilage. It is possible to make a detailed analysis of how individual structural components affect the cartilage, and how changes to them contribute to the development of osteoarthritis.
“Quantitative modeling is a more accurate method for detecting early changes in cartilage in osteoarthritis than traditional tests,” – the researchers reported.
Articular cartilage serves as a shock absorber in the joint and allows it to almost frictionlessly glide over the surface of the bone. The function of articular cartilage is governed by three main structural components. The pressure of interstitial fluid provides the for stiffness of tissues with rapid load on the cartilage, such as when jumping, while at the same time a network of collagen fibrils protects the fabric from deformation.
The study used microscopic and spectroscopic methods for structural analysis of samples of articular cartilage.
The study found that interstitial fluid flow is associated with many structural changes caused by osteoarthritis. Damage to the solid parts of the cartilage leads to increased outflow of fluid from the cartilage, which reduces its stiffness under static load. An increase in fluid flow indicates osteoarthritis.
The researchers found that the network of collagen fibrils was the most sensitive to changes associated with osteoarthritis. Damage to the collagen network affects the ability of cartilage to absorb shocks, making it more susceptible to further damage.
According to the study, changes in the structure of collagen were a much more important factor affecting the cartilage stiffness than the amount of collagen. The ability to protect the collagen network can be an effective way of slowing the progression of osteoarthritis.
The study was published in the journals “Osteoarthritis and Cartilage” and the “Journal of Biomechanics”.
Biotechnology has been used for a long time in Ukraine. Unfortunately, we tend to think that good clinics are only found abroad, as is advanced technology and professional doctors. Thus, the medical system in Ukraine is far from ideal, and we must eliminate this inferiority complex. Biotechnology has become a reality and you do not have to go far to get the expert help of professionals. The project Bioengineering Rehabilitation for Wounded has proved its effectiveness for the past 18 months. For our wards, this advanced technology has been the only way to avoid disability and physical limitations. The number of men who have been put on back on their feet by the project’s doctors is growing. However, there are many more wounded military personnel in need of this specialist medical care that can not be provided in public institutions, and sometimes not even abroad. So once again we ask you to get involved in fundraising and support Ukraine’s military.
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