Spectroscopic Applications to Mineralized Tissues

Multiple factors affect the quality of bone in health and disease, including mineral and collagen quantity and quality. Mid-IR spectroscopic imaging has been applied to thin sections of mineralized tissues to investigate the effect of therapeutics on molecular structure, including in osteoporosis and osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), a genetic disease that results in a spectrum of bone fragility.  Recent studies in  oim/oim mice, an animal model of moderate-to-severe OI, have compared bisphosphonates, the standard of care for OI patients, and RANKL inhibitors, and have demonstrated equivalent fracture reduction and improvements in bone quality. Current projects focus on development of NIR methods for evaluation of bone, which will enable evaluation of molecular composition in intact bone samples.