The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) plays a critical role in knee stability, and clinically, ACL tears greatly increase the risk for post-traumatic arthritis. In this regard, animal models of ACL transection or disruption have been developed using a variety of species, including dogs, sheep, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, and mice. These models have used different techniques for disrupting the function of the ACL, including open surgery, stab incision, arthroscopic transection, and noninvasive joint loading. The outcome measures of these studies have included characterization of the ensuing effects on the articular cartilage, synovium, genetic markers, and biomarkers, and have provided a means of testing different therapeutic interventions. In summary, animal models of ACL injury provide repeatable and relatively straightforward means of reproducing many of the characteristics of human PTA, on a more rapid time frame. Here we review the animal models used for studying post-traumatic arthritis, and discuss the potential advantages and disadvantages of different animals and approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPost-Traumatic Arthritis
Subtitle of host publicationPathogenesis, Diagnosis and Management
PublisherSpringer US
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781489976062
ISBN (Print)9781489976055
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • ACL reconstruction
  • Biomarker
  • Collagen
  • Gait
  • Injury
  • Knee
  • Meniscus
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Posterior cruciate ligament
  • Proteoglycan


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