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In vitro models will minimize animal use in arthritis studies
Date:10/17/2007

and disease as they would in real life. The system then allows drugs, nutritional supplements and even exercise regimens to be tested on the in vitro model.

For example, scientists can determine the effects of pressure to the joints after running or walking using a bioreactor, a device which loads the tissues in the "test tube" environment. Using this new model, MU researchers will unlock clues, on a molecular level, as to why recovery is important in healthy athletes as well as people with arthritis.

Using the joints in the test tubes will allow for greater flexibility when studying arthritis, Cook said. We can test literally hundreds of different loads on joints in a single day and show results in real time. It is strengthening our research as we are able to explain data on a molecular level and then translate it to what happens to people and pets that struggle with arthritis every day.

These in vitro models also provide a much safer mechanism for investigating new drugs and therapies. If severe side effects occur, all we have do is assess what has happened to the tissues rather than trying to treat a laboratory animal or a patient with an adverse reaction.


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Contact: Christian Basi
BasiC@missouri.edu
573-882-4430
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

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