In the past, bones were regenerated using sheep bones or synthetic materials which were costly and bio-hazardous. Recent studies have developed an eco-friendly material which is biodegradable and obtained from the waste products of the food industry. In particular, residue left over after brewing beer caught researchers’ eyes.
This study was conducted at Centre for Biomedical Technology of Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and the Institute of Materials Science and the Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry of Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC). The results showed that the residue left after beer production was rich in contents like calcium, phosphorus, silica, etc. These were coincidently nutrients that help bones become stronger. The residue was incorporated to be used as a material in bone replacements as well as a coating in bone grafts. Not only does this material decrease the burden of the accumulated eco waste, it also provides nutrient-rich media for the treatment of bone diseases.
The National institute of Health and American College of Rheumatology have published a study that indicates walking will drastically reduce the risks of developing Osteoarthritis (OA) in people who have higher risks of getting it. Functional limitations like difficulty getting up from a chair and climbing stairs can be reduced significantly.
Many Americans aged just 25 years are now diagnosed as suffering from Osteoarthrits knees whereas earlier reports mentioned that OA knees is mostly common among middle-aged and older adults. Medical evidence reports that persons diagnosed with OA walk less than 90 minutes weekly on average. Walking is a common physical activity which can be performed daily by all adults. 80% of OA patients experience a limitation in their movements while 11% of adults have a disability to the extent that they need assistance with personal care.
We all lose some bone mass as we age, as the existing bone is broken down faster compared to the formation of new bone. The bones lose calcium and become lighter and more porous; more fracture-prone. Bones lose density as well (Osteopenia). With further breakdown, the bones lose more calcium and become even more porous; this advanced stage is called Osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is commonly seen in large numbers nowadays. Post menopausal women and men of age 70 years and above are at an increased risk for this condition. Bone Mineral Density (BMD) is the test which measures the amount of minerals such as calcium in your bones. It is done using X-ray and Computed Tomography (CT) scan. This information is then used to estimate the strength of your bones.
Nanomedicine technologies have advanced through the research done by Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Dana Farber Cancer Institute. The institute recently discovered a new drug delivery system that can attack cancer cells which are present bones. This system should increase bone strength as well as bone volume in order to control the growth of cancerous cells.
“Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences” published last week discussed this nano technology. Bone is a very favorable place for cancer cells to grow and multiply in large numbers especially from certain parts of the body such as the breasts, prostate and blood. This nano particle system selectively targets the bones and releases the drug in a very subtle way, thus enhancing the growth and strength of the bone.
A new bunch of genes have been researched by the scientists of the University of Queensland. These are known to help the striped burrowing frog prevent muscle wasting during periods of dormancy. Researchers have deduced that these same genes can be extremely beneficial when used in patients who are bedridden and who experience wasting of muscles. They might even help astronauts, the researchers said.
Most times, mammals including humans, experience muscle atrophy, which means that the muscles that are not in use for a long time start degenerating. This is not the case with green striped burrowing frogs which are scientifically known as Cyclorana alboguttata. These frogs hibernate when resources outside are very scarce and thus, can survive by wrapping themselves in a cocoon of shed skin. These frogs suffer very minimal muscle wastage even after long periods of practically zero muscular activity.
EXOGEN is a new portable medical device that uses low intensity, pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS) waves to stimulate the bone’s natural healing process after a fracture. It is a non invasive therapy for faster healing of non-union fractures. This device is also used to accelerate the healing process.