Collagen and the Aging Skeleton

December 4, 2013 Grand Rounds Video: Collagen and the Aging Skeleton

, Professor & Ernest M. Burgess Endowed Chair for Orthopaedic Investigation
Professor and Vice Chair

In this episode, David Eyre, PhD presents the latest research from the Ernest M. Burgess Chair Laboratories of the UW Dept. of Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine.

In vertebrates the collagen scaffolding of different skeletal tissues has evolved a complex range of molecular variations. Largely through genetic studies in the last decade the functional significance of such molecular variations is being understood more clearly. Examples include new genes identified in which mutations cause recessive osteogenesis imperfecta, some of which can produce brittle bones combined with joint contractures through tendon/ligament collagen abnormalities.

The broader clinical implications of these molecular insights from rare genetic diseases include the potential to develop new therapeutic targets and strategies for treating or preventing common degenerative disorders of the aging skeleton. These include osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, degenerative spine disorders and tendon/ligament pathobiologies.