Age-related changes in microarchitecture and mineralization of cancellous bone in the porcine mandibular condyle

Nop M.B.K. Willems, Lars Mulder, Geerling E.J. Langenbach, Thorsten Grünheid, Andrej Zentner, Theo M.G.J. van Eijden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The mandibular condyle is considered a good model for developing cancellous bone because of its rapid growth and high rate of remodeling. The aim of the present study was to analyze the simultaneous changes in microarchitecture and mineralization of cancellous bone during development in a three-dimensional fashion. Eight mandibular condyles of pigs aged 8 weeks prepartum to 108 weeks postpartum were scanned using microCT with an isotropic spatial resolution of 10 μm. The number of trabeculae decreased during development, whereas both the trabecular thickness and the distance between the trabeculae increased. The bone surface to volume ratio decreased during development, possibly limiting the amount of (re)modeling. Both the mean degree of mineralization and intratrabecular differences in mineralization between the surfaces and cores of trabecular elements increased during development. The trabecular surfaces were more highly mineralized in the older condyles compared to the younger ones. Together with the observed decrease in the relative size of trabecular surface, this finding suggests a decrease in (re)modeling activity during development. In accordance with the general growth and development of the pig, it was concluded that most developmental changes in cancellous bone occur until the age of 40 weeks postpartum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)421-427
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Structural Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2007

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are grateful to Jan Harm Koolstra for critically reading the manuscript, Irene Aartman for statistical advices, Peter Brugman for analysis, Rijk Gihaux for technical assistance, and Gert van Beek for his conscientious help in the collection of the material for the present study. This study was institutionally supported by the Inter-University Research School of Dentistry, through the Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA).

Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Growth
  • MicroCT
  • Pig
  • Remodeling
  • Trabecular bone

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