Vibration platform for mice to deliver precise, low intensity mechanical signals to the musculoskeleton

Susan A. Novotny, H. Mehta, D. A. Lowe, D. J. Nuckley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objective: Low intensity vibration as a therapeutic and training modality has received increased attention despite the lack of clear mechanistic pathways. Thus, to determine mechanisms underpinning vibration-induced musculoskeletal adaptations, a vibration platform for mice was designed, constructed, and validated. Methods: Critical aspects of the platform include use of offthe-shelf components to (1) tailor individual parameter selection (acceleration and frequency), (2) produce low error across the plate's surface and throughout the range of vibration parameters, and (3) utilize accelerometer feedback to ensure fidelity within and between bouts of vibration. The vibration device is controlled by a centrally-mounted linear actuator on the underside of the platform that is modulated by accelerometer feedback. Results: Triaxial accelerometers confirmed that vibrations were purely vertical and acceleration responses were within 5% of target stimuli for all accelerations (0.2-1.0 g) and frequencies (25-90 Hz). The platform produced acceleration responses with ≤4% error between 25-90 Hz. Vibration modes were not detected indicating that the circular plate produced uniform stimuli across the platform (error ≤1.1%, P≥0.23) and mouse body mass did not affect the platform's performance (P≥0.43). Conclusions: Our vibration device for mice improves upon existing devices and enables precise, low intensity mechanical signals to be applied with confidence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)412-417
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Musculoskeletal Neuronal Interactions
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2013


  • Acceleration
  • Bone
  • Equipment design
  • Muscle
  • Whole body vibration


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