Menisci function to distribution load and increase stability of the knee joint. Both partial and complete meniscectomy have been shown to increase the incidence of osteoarthritis. Meniscal replacement with allograft, synthetic or tissue engineered replacements, could act to reduce the incidences of osteoarthritis. The success of meniscal replacements depends on their ability to restore normal meniscal function both biologically and biomechanically. Previous studies indicate that a number of biomechanical criteria are important for proper meniscal function, such as the material properties and geometry of the replacement tissue as well as the attachment of the replacement to the tibial plateau. The goals of this project are to quantify the relationship between structure and function for meniscal attachments, and to define a more sophisticated constitutive model of the attachments. Specifically this project will 1) determine the mechanical properties of the anterior and posterior medial meniscal attachments, 2) quantify the thickness of the ligamentous, uncalcified fibrocartilage, calcified fibrocartilage and subchondral bone zones in the meniscal attachments, as well as the depth, number and frequency of interdigitations between the calcified fibrocartilage and subchondral bone. The glycosaminoglycan and collagen orientation within the attachments will also be determined. Lastly, the project will 3) model the attachments as fiber-reinforced poroelastic to predict the behavior of the attachments. The results of these Aims will then be used to quantify a relationship between the structure and function of the native meniscal attachments. This data can then be used to develop, design and evaluate meniscal replacements, including tissue engineered constructs. A successful meniscal replacements will work to prevent joint degeneration following menisectomy.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Academic Research Enhancement Awards (AREA) (R15)
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Study Section
Skeletal Biology Structure and Regeneration Study Section (SBSR)
Program Officer
Panagis, James S
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Michigan Technological University
Engineering (All Types)
Schools of Engineering
United States
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Abraham, A C; Pauly, H M; Donahue, T L Haut (2014) Deleterious effects of osteoarthritis on the structure and function of the meniscal enthesis. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 22:275-83
Abraham, Adam C; Villegas, Diego F; Kaufman, Kenton R et al. (2013) Internal pressure of human meniscal root attachments during loading. J Orthop Res 31:1507-13
Abraham, Adam C; Donahue, Tammy L Haut (2013) From meniscus to bone: a quantitative evaluation of structure and function of the human meniscal attachments. Acta Biomater 9:6322-9
Moyer, John T; Priest, Ryan; Bouman, Troy et al. (2013) Indentation properties and glycosaminoglycan content of human menisci in the deep zone. Acta Biomater 9:6624-9
Moyer, John T; Abraham, Adam C; Haut Donahue, Tammy L (2012) Nanoindentation of human meniscal surfaces. J Biomech 45:2230-5
Abraham, Adam C; Edwards, Christian R; Odegard, Gregory M et al. (2011) Regional and fiber orientation dependent shear properties and anisotropy of bovine meniscus. J Mech Behav Biomed Mater 4:2024-30
Abraham, Adam C; Moyer, John T; Villegas, Diego F et al. (2011) Hyperelastic properties of human meniscal attachments. J Biomech 44:413-8
Hauch, Karen N; Villegas, Diego F; Haut Donahue, Tammy L (2010) Geometry, time-dependent and failure properties of human meniscal attachments. J Biomech 43:463-8
Villegas, Diego F; Donahue, Tammy L Haut (2010) Collagen morphology in human meniscal attachments: a SEM study. Connect Tissue Res 51:327-36
Hauch, K N; Oyen, M L; Odegard, G M et al. (2009) Nanoindentation of the insertional zones of human meniscal attachments into underlying bone. J Mech Behav Biomed Mater 2:339-47

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