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DIPARTIMENTO DI FISIOLOGIA E FARMACOLOGIA 'VITTORIO ERSPAMER' [disattivato] >
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|Title: ||Investigation of cartlilage aging by means of MRI, DTI and DS techniques|
|Authors: ||GRUBER, CESARE ERNESTO MARIA|
|Tutor: ||CAPUANI, SILVIA|
|Issue Date: ||2-Mar-2012|
|Abstract: ||Articular cartilage (AC) is an aneural and avascular tissue that covers the ends of articulating bones in diarthrodial joints, and its main functions are to distribute joint loading and to provide nearly frictionless movement of the articulating bones.
The mechanical properties of AC can be attribute to the complex structure of its extracellular matrix (ECM), mainly composed by collagen fibres, proteoglycan (PG) aggregates and interstitial water [1, 2].
Nowadays, the progression of mean expectation of life has highlighted the importance of a correct diagnosis for many age-related diseases.
In AC, aging process occur in older age with cellular senescence [3, 4] and ECM modifications [5, 6], frequently involving in Osteoarthritic diseases [7–9]. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common
degenerative joint disease and represent one of the most common disabilities cause (6,6% of Italian population, actually), posing a high economical burden to society.
OA is characterized by the proceeding destruction of AC by uncontrolled proteolysis of ECM and typically leads to a remodeling of affected joints. No treatment neither early diagnosis method currently exist for OA pathologies, and the detection of differences and relations between early OA and aging is still an open field in clinical research [3, 8, 10].
To understand the progression of the disease, the comprehension of mechanisms involving on to ECM components during AC degradation is essential. The reduction of PGs concentration is recognized as the first symptom of degeneration in OA [11–14], while collagen fibers result more resistant from degradation. Using different experimental techniques, it is possible to observe the contribution of degradation of a specific macromolecule to the AC disease progression.
Dielectric Spectroscopy (DS) resulted as an indirect indicator of collagen fibrils integrity through observation of intermolecular hydrogen bounds formation between water molecules .
Moreover, some water molecules result oriented along collagen fibers and that orientation is well recognized by Magnetic Resonance T2 -weighted imaging (T2w-MRI) contrast variations through intra-molecular dipole interactions of water hydrogen nuclei[16-18].
The study of the dynamic of water molecules in cartilage resulted to provide information on cartilage structure [19-21]. Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) [22-26] is a widely used Magnetic Resonance technique to investigate fiber microstructures in human brain, like in skeletal muscle tissue . Moreover, some authors [20, 28, 29] have demonstrated that DTI technique can recognise collagen fibril orientation and other authors [20, 30, 31] have shown how the reduction of proteoglycan content in cartilage affect water Apparent Diffusion Coefficient (ADC).
For all the cartilage futures listed so far, and taking into account the potentiality provided by DTI investigations, here we monitored cartilage aging by means of DTI and T2 -weighted imaging techniques. Specifically, starting to the observation that in cartilage is generally observed a reduction in water content during aging , we investigate in vitro cartilage samples during natural dehydration process. Moreover, we combined NMR with DS measurements to deeply investigate structural variation in cartilage matrix.
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|Research interests: ||PHYSICS OF BIOSYSISTEMS, COMPUTATIONAL BYOPHYSICS, MOLECULAR DYNAMICS AND ADVANCED STATISTICS AND STATISTICAL MECHANICS|
|Skills short description: ||HIGH CAPABILITY IN COMPUTATION LANGUAGES SUCH AS LATEX C, C++ AND MATLAB.
EXPERIMENTAL EXPERIENCES IN MAGNETIC RESONANCE SPECTROSCOPY AND IMAGING, DIELECTRIC
SPECTROSCOPY AND X-RAY FLUORESCENCE.
THEORETICAL KNOWLEDGE ON MAGNETIC RESONANCE SEQUENCES AND ANALYSIS, AND THEORETICAL AS APPLIED PHYSICS|
|Personal skills keywords: ||BIOPHYSICS|
|Appears in PhD:||BIOFISICA|
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