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Developments in intervertebral disc disease research: pathophysiology, mechanobiology, and therapeutics

  • Kathryn T. Weber
  • Timothy D. Jacobsen
  • Robert Maidhof
  • Justin Virojanapa
  • Chris Overby
  • Ona Bloom
  • Shaheda Quraishi
  • Mitchell Levine
  • Nadeen O. ChahineEmail author
Biological Adjuvants in Orthopedic Surgery (J Dines and D Grande, Section Editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Biological Adjuvants in Orthopedic Surgery

Abstract

Low back pain is a leading cause of disability worldwide and the second most common cause of physician visits. There are many causes of back pain, and among them, disc herniation and intervertebral disc degeneration are the most common diagnoses and targets for intervention. Currently, clinical treatment outcomes are not strongly correlated with diagnoses, emphasizing the importance for characterizing more completely the mechanisms of degeneration and their relationships with symptoms. This review covers recent studies elucidating cellular and molecular changes associated with disc mechanobiology, as it relates to degeneration and regeneration. Specifically, we review findings on the biochemical changes in disc diseases, including cytokines, chemokines, and proteases; advancements in disc disease diagnostics using imaging modalities; updates on studies examining the response of the intervertebral disc to injury; and recent developments in repair strategies, including cell-based repair, biomaterials, and tissue engineering. Findings on the effects of the omega-6 fatty acid, linoleic acid, on nucleus pulposus tissue engineering are presented. Studies described in this review provide greater insights into the pathogenesis of disc degeneration and may define new paradigms for early or differential diagnostics of degeneration using new techniques such as systemic biomarkers. In addition, research on the mechanobiology of disease enriches the development of therapeutics for disc repair, with potential to diminish pain and disability associated with disc degeneration.

Keywords

Spine Intervertebral disc Back pain Inflammation Tissue engineering Stem cells Biomaterials 

Notes

Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

Kathryn T. Weber, Timothy D. Jacobsen, Robert Maidhof, Justin Virojanapa, Chris Overby, Ona Bloom, Shaheda Quraishi, and Mitchell Levine declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Nadeen Chahine reports grants from National Science Foundation (NSF CAREER 1151605), grants from New York State Department of Health (Empire Clinical Research Investigator Program), grants from National Institute of Health (R41AG050021), and grants from American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine, during the conduct of the study.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathryn T. Weber
    • 1
  • Timothy D. Jacobsen
    • 1
  • Robert Maidhof
    • 1
  • Justin Virojanapa
    • 2
  • Chris Overby
    • 2
  • Ona Bloom
    • 1
    • 3
  • Shaheda Quraishi
    • 2
    • 3
  • Mitchell Levine
    • 2
  • Nadeen O. Chahine
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Biomechanics and Bioengineering Lab, Center for Autoimmune and Musculoskeletal DiseasesThe Feinstein Institute for Medical ResearchManhassetUSA
  2. 2.Department of NeurosurgeryHofstra North Shore-LIJ School of MedicineManhassetUSA
  3. 3.Department of Physical Medicine and RehabilitationHofstra North Shore-LIJ School of MedicineManhassetUSA
  4. 4.Department of Molecular MedicineHofstra North Shore-LIJ School of MedicineManhassetUSA

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