Analysis of bone architecture sensitivity for changes in mechanical loading, cellular activity, mechanotransduction, and tissue properties

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Abstract

Bone has an architecture which is optimized for its mechanical environment. In various conditions, this architecture is altered, and the underlying cause for this change is not always known. In the present paper, we investigated the sensitivity of the bone microarchitecture for four factors: changes in bone cellular activity, changes in mechanical loading, changes in mechanotransduction, and changes in mechanical tissue properties. The goal was to evaluate whether these factors can be the cause of typical bone structural changes seen in various pathologies. For this purpose, we used an established computational model for the simulation of bone adaptation.We performed two sensitivity analyses to evaluate the effect of the four factors on the trabecular structure, in both developing and adult bone. According to our simulations, alterations in mechanical load, bone cellular activities, mechanotransduction, and mechanical tissue properties may all result in bone structural changes similar to those observed in various pathologies. For example, our simulations confirmed that decreases in loading and increases in osteoclast number and activity may lead to osteoporotic changes. In addition, they showed that both increased loading and decreased bone matrix stiffness may lead to bone structural changes similar to those seen in osteoarthritis. Finally, we found that the model may help in gaining a better understanding of the contribution of individual disturbances to a complicated multi-factorial disease process, such as osteogenesis imperfecta.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)701-712
Number of pages12
JournalBiomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology
Volume10
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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