Three-dimensional morphometry of the L6 vertebra in the ovariectomized rat model of osteoporosis: Biomechanical implications

J. H. Kinney, D. L. Haupt, M. Balooch, A. J C Ladd, J. T. Ryaby, Nancy E Lane

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104 Scopus citations


This article summarizes the results of a three-dimensional study of changes in the morphology of the L6 rat vertebra at 120 days after ovariectomy (OVX), with estrogen replacement therapy used as a positive control. Synchrotron radiation microtomography was used to quantify the structural parameters defining trabecular bone architecture, while finite-element methods were used to explore the relationships between these parameters and the compressive elastic behavior of the vertebrae. There was a 22% decrease in trabecular bone volume (TBV) and a 19% decline in mean trabecular thickness (Tb.Th) with OVX. This was accompanied by a 150% increase in trabecular connectivity, a result of the perforation of trabecular plates. Finite-element analysis of the trabecular bone removed from the cortical shell showed a 37% decline in the Young's modulus in compression after OVX with no appreciable change in the estrogen-treated group. The intact vertebrae (containing its trabecular bone) exhibited a 15% decrease in modulus with OVX, but this decline lacked statistical significance. OVX-induced changes in the trabecular architecture were different from those that have been observed in the proximal tibia. This difference was a consequence of the much more platelike structure of the trabecular bone in the vertebra.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1981-1991
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Cortical bone
  • Microtomography
  • Osteoporosis
  • Rat model
  • Synchrotron radiation
  • Trabecular bone
  • Vertebra

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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