TISSUE STRUCTURE AND MECHANICS

The key functions of cartilage and bone are mechanical, be that in transfer of load through cartilage to the subchondral bone or providing attachment sites for ligaments and tendons in bone. Most tissues have been shown to exhibit viscoelastic mechanical properties. Dynamic Mechanical Analysis (DMA) is therefore an important and powerful testing modality when examining native tissues or producing new biomaterials for tissue engineering. Beyond their mechanics, Meg is fascinated by the changing structures of tissues in health and disease.

Acta Biomaterialia 2018

In this study we investigated the effects of osteoarthritis (OA) on both the viscoelastic and biochemical properties of articular cartilage in the human knee joint.

The ability of cartilage to store energy (storage modulus) was significantly decreased in OA. This was attributed to a reduction in proteoglycan content as shown by quantitative x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy and in increased unbound water as quantified by thermogravimetric analysis.

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Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 2019

In this project, bovine osteochondral cores were assessed for their viscoelasticity. Investigating how the histomorphometry of subchondral bone affected their viscoelasticity.

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Journal of the Mechanical Behaviour of Biomedical Materials 2018

This study investigated the effects of hydroxyapatite addition into agarose and gellan hydrogels on the dynamic mechanical properties.

Biomaterials are often tested in static compression or tension. However, as most tissues in the body have shown to be inherently viscoelastic.

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