Exploratory full-field mechanical analysis across the osteochondral tissue-biomaterial interface in an ovine model

Jeffrey N. Clark, Agathe Heyraud, Saman Tavana, Talal Al-Jabri, Francesca Tallia, Brett Clark, Gordon W. Blunn, Justin P. Cobb, Ulrich Hansen, Julian R. Jones, Jonathan R. T. Jeffers

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Osteochondral injuries are increasingly prevalent, yet success in articular cartilage regeneration remains elusive, necessitating the development of new surgical interventions and novel medical devices. As part of device development, animal models are an important milestone in illustrating functionality of novel implants. Inspection of the tissue-biomaterial system is vital to understand and predict load-sharing capacity, fixation mechanics and micromotion, none of which are directly captured by traditional post-mortem techniques. This study aims to characterize the localised mechanics of an ex vivo ovine osteochondral tissue–biomaterial system extracted following six weeks in vivo testing, utilising laboratory micro-computed tomography, in situ loading and digital volume correlation. Herein, the full-field displacement and strain distributions were visualised across the interface of the system components, including newly formed tissue. The results from this exploratory study suggest that implant micromotion in respect to the surrounding tissue could be visualised in 3D across multiple loading steps. The methodology provides a non-destructive means to assess device performance holistically, informing device design to improve osteochondral regeneration strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3911
Number of pages13
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sept 2020


  • RCUK
  • EP/N025059/1
  • EP/K027549/1


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