How best to preserve and reveal the structural intricacies of cartilaginous tissue.

Hunziker, Ernst Bruno; Lippuner, Kurt; Shintani, Nahoko (2014). How best to preserve and reveal the structural intricacies of cartilaginous tissue. Matrix biology, 39, pp. 33-43. Elsevier 10.1016/j.matbio.2014.08.010

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No single processing technique is capable of optimally preserving each and all of the structural entities of cartilaginous tissue. Hence, the choice of methodology must necessarily be governed by the nature of the component that is targeted for analysis, for example, fibrillar collagens or proteoglycans within the extracellular matrix, or the chondrocytes themselves. This article affords an insight into the pitfalls that are to be encountered when implementing the available techniques and how best to circumvent them. Adult articular cartilage is taken as a representative pars pro toto of the different bodily types. In mammals, this layer of tissue is a component of the synovial joints, wherein it fulfills crucial and diverse biomechanical functions. The biomechanical functions of articular cartilage have their structural and molecular correlates. During the natural course of postnatal development and after the onset of pathological disease processes, such as osteoarthritis, the tissue undergoes structural changes which are intimately reflected in biomechanical modulations. The fine structural intricacies that subserve the changes in tissue function can be accurately assessed only if they are faithfully preserved at the molecular level. For this reason, a careful consideration of the tissue-processing technique is indispensable. Since, as aforementioned, no single methodological tool is capable of optimally preserving all constituents, the approach must be pre-selected with a targeted structure in view. Guidance in this choice is offered.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Orthopaedic, Plastic and Hand Surgery (DOPH) > Clinic of Osteoporosis

UniBE Contributor:

Hunziker, Ernst Bruno; Lippuner, Kurt and Shintani, Nahoko


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Romain Perrelet

Date Deposited:

11 Feb 2015 08:27

Last Modified:

30 Jun 2015 10:07

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Articular cartilage, Fine structure, Matrix, Preservation




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