Osteoarthritis (OA) is very common joint disease in the aging population. Main symptom of OA is accompanied by degenerative changes of articular cartilage. Cartilage contains mostly type II collagen and proteoglycans, so it is difficult to access the quality and morphology of cartilage tissue in situ by conventional diagnostic tools (X-ray, MRI and echography) directly or indirectly. Raman spectroscopy is a label-free technique which enables to analyze molecular composition in degenerative cartilage. In this study, we generated an animal OA model surgically induced by knee joint instability, and the femurs were harvested at two weeks after the surgery. We performed Raman spectroscopic analysis for the articular cartilage of distal femurs in OA side and unaffected side in each mouse. In the result, there is no gross findings in the surface of the articular cartilage in OA. On the other hand, Raman spectral data of the articular cartilage showed drastic changes in comparison between OA and control side. The major finding of this study is that the relative intensity of phosphate band (960 cm-1) increases in the degenerative cartilage. This may be the result of exposure of subchondral bone due to thinning of the cartilage layer. In conclusion, Raman spectroscopic technique is sufficient to characterize articular cartilage in OA as a pilot study for Raman application in cartilage degeneration and regeneration using animal models and human subjects.
Yusuke Oshima, Mayu Akehi, Hiroshi Kiyomatsu, and Hiromasa Miura, "Label-free characterization of articular cartilage in osteoarthritis model mice by Raman spectroscopy," Proc. SPIE 10054, Advanced Biomedical and Clinical Diagnostic and Surgical Guidance Systems XV, 1005406 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 29, 2017; Published: 14 February 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2250673.
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