3 July 2012
4 - 5pm
Venue: Ground Floor Seminar Room (G010), UniServices House, 70 Symonds Street, Auckland
A Bioengineering research seminar by Associate Professor Peter Lee, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Melbourne
Despite efforts to prevent it, knee injury continues to be a problem. The knee is one of the most commonly injured joints in sporting activities.
In addition, impact forces that can cause soft tissue injuries to the knee, such as failure of ligaments, also inflict micro-damage to the cartilage and the underlying subchondral bone, increasing the risk of post-traumatic osteoarthritis.
Important questions are: how does the knee joint (muscles and ligaments) respond to different impact loads, and how mechanically resilient are the knee’s cartilage and subchondral bone to these extreme impact loads? To answer these fundamental questions, we have developed computational musculoskeletal and finite element models and have performed experiments to obtain quantitative information such as muscles forces, ligament forces, stress and strain on cartilage and bone in the knee joint due to impact load. Using data from human motion analysis experiments, non-injurious loadings were scaled into loads that could cause knee injury using a high speed mechanical test system on specimens from the knees of cadavers.
The studies of knee joints of human subjects and cadavers have provided data to apply physiological loadings to small scale osteochondral explants, enabling the study of realistic bone microstructure damage and degenerative changes in cartilage. The results will help to provide a better understanding of the knee injury threshold and strategies for prevention of knee injury.