New evidence to explain how the bodys natural joint lubricant prevents the wear and tear that can lead to osteoarthritis has been uncovered by researchers at Duke Universitys Pratt School of Engineering The findings may lead to new methods for treating arthritis, the researchers said.
The team found in realistic models of joints that, rather than simply reducing friction, a component of joint fluid called lubricin forms a very thin barrier that repels joint surfaces to prevent their contact. The researchers further found that lubricin in combination with a second constituent of joint fluid known as hyaluronic acid (HA) produces an even greater protective effect than either of the components alone.
The findings were prepared for presentation at the American Chemical Society national meeting in Atlanta at a session beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 29, at the OMNI CNN Center. Collaborators on the study include Stefan Zauscher and Nehal Abu-lail, of Dukes Pratt School; Farshid Guilak, of the Duke University Medical Center; and Gregory Jay, of Rhode Island Hospital in Providence.
Kendall Morgan | EurekAlert!
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