, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 583-586

Variations in mineral apposition rate of trabecular bone within the beagle skeleton

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The mineral apposition rate of trabecular bone was determined in several skeletal sites of young adult beagles. Tetracycline derivatives were administered intravenously or orally on 2 separate occasions preceding the day of sacrifice in order to label actively mineralizing bone surfaces. The rate of mineral apposition was calculated by dividing the distance between the 2 tetracycline markers by the time interval between their administration. The lumbar vertebra, proximal humerus, and pelvis, each of which contains red marrow, were found to have a significantly higher (P<0.001) rate of mineral apposition in trabecular bone than the skeletal sites containing yellow marrow—the proximal ulna and distal humerus. The mean apposition rate in the former 3 sites was 1.3±0.3µm/day, while that in the latter 2 was 0.9±0.2µm/day (uncorrected for plane of sectioning). It is tempting to speculate that this finding may be a consequence of differences in vascularity between red and yellow marrow.