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Margolis DS, Lien YH, Lai LW, Szivek JA. May 2004. Bilateral symmetry of biomechanical properties in mouse femora. Med Eng Phys, 26:349-53
Bone healing and remodeling are commonly examined in animal models by comparing one femur (experimental) to the contralateral femur (control) with the assumption that they are identical with respect to their biomechanical properties. While past studies have characterized the symmetry in geometrical properties in many types of animal bones, few studies have compared the symmetry in the biomechanical properties. The purpose of this study was to determine whether there is symmetry in the mechanical properties of mouse femora. Strain gauges were attached to the posterior surface of the femora of C57BL/6 mice, parallel to the long axis of the bone. The femora were mechanically tested in cantilever bending while strain values were recorded. Moments of inertia, cortical areas, and moduli of elasticity were determined from strains and cross-sectional properties. Mouse femora demonstrated an average strain difference of 0.4% in tension and 1.4% in compression. Elastic moduli differed by 6.6% and 0.9% in tension and compression, respectively, and failure strength differed by an average of 2.0%. Statistical analysis showed there were no significant differences in strain, modulus, or failure load values for the mice, indicating mechanical and geometrical symmetry of mouse femora in cantilever bending.Back