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Quasi-Static Shear Mechanical Properties of Articular Cartilage

Articular cartilage, the soft connective tissue that coats bones in joints, is a highly complex and inhomogeneous material. It is made up of a fluid-saturated, cross-linked network of collagen fibrils whose orientation and porosity vary with depth from the articular surface. Interspersed among the network are cells and highly charged molecules called proteoglycans. Cell shape, cell density and proteoglycan density are all also spatially dependent.  

High-Resolution Measurement of Shear Mechanical Properties in Articular Cartilage Using GRATE and WAND

Local mechanical properties in articular cartilage and other biological tissues are typically measured by tracking the displacement of cells, cell nuclei and other fiducial markers using particle image velocimetry (PIV) and other feature-tracking methods (see "Quasi-Static Shear Mechanical Properties of Articular Cartilage").  However, these techniques are limited in spatial resolution by the density of trackable markers.  In adult articular cartilage, intervertebral disk and other soft tissues, cells can be very sparse.  Therefore, we have developed grid-resolution automated tissue elastog

Anatomic Variation of Articular Cartilage Depth-Dependent Shear Properties

Articular cartilage (AC), a biological tissue that protects and lubricates joints, plays a critical role during healthy locomotion.  While much is known about this tissue's biochemistry and compressive mechanical properties, comparatively less attention has been given to its shear mechanical properties.  This represents a critical knowledge gap because cartilage tissue experiences significant shear under normal loading conditions, and may indeed most frequently fail in such circumstances.

Structure-Function Relations in Articular Cartilage's Shear Properties

Articular cartilage (AC), a biological tissue that protects and lubricates joints, plays a critical role during healthy locomotion.  Ongoing work in the Cohen lab has been examining the spatially heterogeneous mechanical properties of this tissue using confocal rheology.  This technique allows us to simultaneously deform the tissue with a known stress and measure the local strain field.  From this information, we can calculate the local shear properties.

Enhancing Rotational Diffusion using Shear

In thermal equilibrium, particles suspended in a fluid randomly move about due to kicks from the fluid molecules, in what is known as Brownian motion or diffusion. Shear a fluid, however, and the particles' diffusion will be greatly enhanced. Why? Diffusion spreads some of the particles to regions of the fluid with different velocities. As the fluid then carries different particles with different speeds, the particles spread out faster, effectively increasing the diffusion. This mechanism, dubbed Taylor dispersion after its discoverer G. I.

Families Learning Science Together

In collaboration with the Cornell Center for Materials Research and the Ithaca Public Library, Jesse has been participating in the monthly series Families Learning Science Together.  Themes range from "the science of bridge building" to "junk box experiments."  Each month a new set of activities is available for children and parents to engage in together.  Stop by the Ithaca library and ask about when the next event is scheduled, or email JLS533 <at> cornell.edu to find out more.

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