Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences CMLS

, Volume 59, Issue 1, pp 27–35

Molecular basis of osteoarthritis: biomechanical aspects

  • A. Kerin
  • P. Patwari
  • K. Kuettner
  • A. Cole
  • A. Grodzinsky

DOI: 10.1007/s00018-002-8402-1

Cite this article as:
Kerin, A., Patwari, P., Kuettner, K. et al. CMLS, Cell. Mol. Life Sci. (2002) 59: 27. doi:10.1007/s00018-002-8402-1

Abstract.

The unique biomechanical properties of healthy cartilage ensure that articular cartilage is able to transmit force between the joints while maintaining almost friction-free limb movement. In osteoarthritis, the biomechanical properties are compromised, but we still do not understood whether this precedes the onset of the disease or is a result of it. This review focuses on the physical changes to cartilage with age, disease, and mechanical loading, with specific reference to the increased collagen cross-linking that occurs with age (nonenzymatic glycation), and the response of chondrocytes to physiological and pathological loads. In addition, the biomechanical properties and matrix biosynthesis of cartilage from various joint surfaces of the knee and ankle are compared to elucidate reasons why the ankle is less affected by progressive osteoarthritis than the knee.

Key words. Biomechanics; Osteoarthritis; mechanical loading; age; glycation; biosynthesis.

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Kerin
    • 1
  • P. Patwari
    • 1
  • K. Kuettner
    • 2
  • A. Cole
    • 2
  • A. Grodzinsky
    • 1
  1. 1.MIT Center for Biomedical Engineering, Departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Rm 38-377, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 (USA), Fax: +1 617 258 5239US
  2. 2.Department of Biochemistry, Rush University Medical School, Rush Presbyterian, St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois (USA)US