Experimental and finite element analysis of strains induced by axial tibial compression in young-adult and old female C57Bl/6 mice

Tarpit K. Patel, Michael D. Brodt, Matthew J. Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

47 Scopus citations

Abstract

Axial compression of the mouse tibia is used to study strain-adaptive bone (re)modeling. In some studies, comparisons between mice of different ages are of interest. We characterized the tibial deformation and force-strain relationships in female C57Bl/6 mice at 5-, 12- and 22-months age. A three-gauge experimental method was used to determine the strain distribution at the mid-diaphysis, while specimen-specific finite element analysis was used to examine strain distribution along the tibial length. The peak strains in the tibial mid-diaphyseal cross-section are compressive and occur at the postero-lateral apex. The magnitudes of these peak compressive strains are 1.5 to 2 times those on the opposite, antero-medial face (a site often used for strain gauge placement). For example, -10. N force applied to a 5-months old mouse engenders a peak compressive strain of -2800. με and a tensile strain on the antero-medial face of +1450. με. The orientation of the neutral axis at the mid-diaphysis did not differ with age (p=0.46), indicating a similar deformation mode in young and old tibiae. On the other hand, from 5- to 22-months there is a 25% reduction in cortical thickness and moment of inertia (p<0.05), resulting in significantly greater tibial strain magnitudes in older mice for equivalent applied force (p<0.05). We conclude that comparisons of tibial loading responses in young-adult and old C57Bl/6 tibiae are facilitated by similar deformation pattern across ages, but that modest adjustment of force levels is required to engender matching peak strains.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)451-457
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Volume47
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 22 2014

Keywords

  • Aging
  • Bone adaptation
  • In vivo loading
  • Mouse tibia
  • Tibial compression

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