#musculoskeletal

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Muscle dystrophy

Duchenne: "Crosstalk" between muscle and spleen

Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the most common muscle disease in children and is passed on by X-linked recessive inheritance. Characteristic is a progressive muscular atrophy. The disease often results in death before the third decade of life. Researchers of the Universities of Maynooth (Ireland) and Bonn have found a connection between dystrophic muscles and the lymphatic system in mice…

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Outstanding radiologist

International recognition for Dr Jamie MacKay

Radiologist Dr Jamie MacKay has achieved international recognition for his research using advanced imaging to help patients with osteoarthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions. MacKay, who is a radiologist at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) and lecturer at University of East Anglia (UEA), has been elected as a Junior Fellow of the International Society for Magnetic…

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Surgical material research

Patching skull injuries with eggshells

A bioactive polymer-ceramic composite for fixing implants and restoring bone defects in the skull was developed by an international group of materials scientists from the Russian National University of Science and Technology (NUST) MISIS Center for Composite Materials. An innovative composition of the material based on eggshell-derived bioceramic provides increased strength and biointegration of…

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Joint study shows

Endoprothetic risk: Metals from implants can accumulate in bone tissue

Using highly complex analytical techniques, a group of researchers from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin were able to observe in detail how different metals are released from joint implants and accumulate in the surrounding bone tissue. Findings showed a steady release of metals from various implant components. In contrast to previous assumptions, this was not related to the degree of…

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Fossilised findings

Study shows: Even dinosaurs had cancer

A collaboration led by the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and McMaster University has led to the discovery and diagnosis of an aggressive malignant bone cancer — an osteosarcoma — for the first time ever in a dinosaur. Examples of malignant cancers are very rare in the fossil record. The paper was published in the journal The Lancet Oncology. The cancerous bone in question is the fibula (lower…

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Congenital defect reconstruction

Pectus Excavatum: First-in-human trial of novel reconstruction scaffold

Medtech company BellaSeno announced the initiation of a first-in-human trial of its novel, absorbable soft tissue reconstruction scaffold (Senella). A patient with Pectus Excavatum congenital defect has undergone surgery at Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane, Australia, earlier this month. The procedure was performed by Dr. Michael Wagels, Principal Investigator of the trial and Plastic and…

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Algorithmic enhancement

Improved MRI scans could aid in development of arthritis treatments

An algorithm that analyses MRI images and automatically detects small changes in knee joints over time could be used in the development of new treatments for arthritis. A team of engineers, radiologists and physicians, led by the University of Cambridge, developed the algorithm, which builds a three-dimensional model of an individual’s knee joint in order to map where arthritis is affecting the…

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Bone cement research

Developing self-healing bone replacements

Our body is able to treat many injuries and wounds all by itself. Self-healing powers repair skin abrasions and enable bones to grow back together. However, doctors often have to lend a helping hand to repair bones after a fracture or due to a defect. Increasingly, bone replacement materials are being used, which partially or completely restore the form and function of the bone at the site of the…

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Diabetes-related diseases

3D printed implants for personalized treatment of bone defects

BellaSeno GmbH, a company developing absorbable scaffolds using additive manufacturing technologies, announced a collaboration with Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin under the recently established SyMBoD consortium. Under the agreement, BellaSeno will design and manufacture personalized, 3D-printed, absorbable implants suitable for the treatment of diabetes patients with bone defects. The…

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Skeletal reconstruction

New stem cells discovery could pave the way to generate new bone

A population of stem cells with the ability to generate new bone has been newly discovered by a group of researchers at the University of Connecticut (UConn) School of Dental Medicine. In the journal Stem Cells, lead investigator Dr. Ivo Kalajzic, professor of reconstructive sciences, postdoctoral fellows Dr. Sierra Root and Dr. Natalie Wee, and collaborators at Harvard, Maine Medical Research…

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Finding new treatment options

Cancer cachexia: Help against muscle loss

Cancer cachexia often occurs in cancer patients in an advanced state. This metabolic wasting syndrome leads to severely reduced muscle mass and fat tissue, which cannot be reversed by nutritional support. Furthermore, muscle regeneration is affected during cancer cachexia due to impaired muscle stem cell function. A problem that also occurs often in the aging process. Cancer cachexia is…

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Releasing the brakes on Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Potential new methods for DMD therapies

Researchers identified a group of small molecules that may open the door to developing new therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), an as-yet-uncured disease that results in devastating muscle weakening and loss. The molecules tested by the team from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania eased repression of a specific gene, utrophin, in mouse muscle cells,…

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'ScoliBot' offers superhuman precision

New robots improve spinal straightening

ScoliBot, a new robotic system, could perform spinal surgery to a higher degree of accuracy than human counterparts. Devised by a team from Nottingham Trent University (NTU), the system has two robotic arms that semi-autonomously drill holes in individual vertebrae in procedures to straighten the spines of patients with conditions such as scoliosis or kyphosis. Leading the project, Professor…

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Monitoring bioresorbable magnesium

New insights on the corrosion of metal implants

Researchers in Zurich have recently been able to monitor the corrosion of bioresorbable magnesium alloys at the nanoscale over a time scale of a few seconds to many hours. This is an important step towards accurately predicting how fast implants are resorbed by the body to enable the development of tailored materials for temporary implant applications. Magnesium and its alloys are increasingly…

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Inherited neuromuscular disease HSP

Genetic cause for hereditary spastic paraplegia identified

Scientists at St George’s, University of London, in collaboration with researchers from Germany, the USA, Tunisia and Iran have identified a new gene associated with the neuromuscular disorder, hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP). The study, published in Nature Communications, also highlights a potential mechanism for the disease, which is already being targeted in drug trials for Alzheimer’s…

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Regeneration vs. osteoarthritis

Regrow cartilage in joints? Science says you can

Contrary to popular belief, cartilage in human joints can repair itself through a process similar to that used by creatures such as salamanders and zebrafish to regenerate limbs, researchers at Duke Health found. This process could be harnessed as a treatment for osteoarthritis. Publishing in the journal Science Advances, the researchers identified a mechanism for cartilage repair that appears to…

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CRISPR-Cas vs MDC1A

Undoing the damage of muscle dystrophy

A new technology has brought researchers one step closer to a future cure for Congenital Muscular Dystrophy type1A, a devastating muscle disease that affects children. The new findings are based on research by Kinga Gawlik at Lund University, Department of Experimental Medical Science, and were recently published in Nature. Congenital Muscular Dystrophy type1A, MDC1A, a progressive genetic…

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Let it grow

3D printed templates for bone implants made of salt

With the help of a 3D printed salt template, ETH researchers from ETH Zurich have succeeded in producing magnesium scaffolds with structured porosity that are suitable for bioresorbable bone implants. For the treatment of complex bone fractures or even missing bone parts, surgeons typically deploy metal implants. In this context, an attractive alternative to the traditional materials like…

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Food supplementation

Can 'fortified' flour fight vitamin D deficiency?

Adding vitamin D to wheat flour would prevent 10 million new cases of vitamin D deficiency in England and Wales over the next 90 years, say researchers at the University of Birmingham. The researchers say overhauling existing public health policy to introduce the mandatory fortification of vitamin D in wheat flour would not only be cost saving but would significantly reduce the burden on the NHS…

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Heart and bones

Osteoarthritis linked to cardiovascular disease

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have investigated the link between osteoarthritis and mortality in an epidemiological study. It was shown that the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease was higher for people with osteoarthritis than for the rest of the population. Using population registers, the researchers studied approximately 469 000 people living in Skåne, Sweden, who in 2003…

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Osteoporosis

Will increased protein intake save your bones? Not likely

In the most comprehensive study of its kind, researchers from the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Surrey investigated if protein intake can impact bone health of adults and children. Examining 127 previous studies published over a 40 year period, which scrutinised the link between protein and bone density, bone mineral content and relative risk of osteoporotic fractures,…

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Rare bone cancer

Targeted approach to therapy for chordomas

Chordomas are rare bone tumors for which only few options of treatment exist. Scientists and doctors from the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT), the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), and Heidelberg University Hospital (UKHD) have discovered a particular genetic trait of chordomas in advanced stages after conducting gene analysis. Their findings, published in the journal Nature…

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Repetitive stress injuries

Selfie elbow – yes, this is actually a thing

Specialists are seeing more and more repetitive stress injuries (RSI) from overuse of smartphones and tablets ­– the main instigators of emerging conditions like texting thumb and selfie elbow, notes UT Southwestern rehabilitation specialist Dr. Renee Enriquez. “With all overuse injuries, rest is the most important part of recovery. Complete rest is best, but since technology is a required…

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