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Fracture Apparatus Design and Protocol Optimization for Closed-stabilized Fractures in Rodents

Published: August 14th, 2018



1College of Osteopathic Medicine, Michigan State University, 2Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Michigan Medical School, 3Lymann Briggs College, Michigan State University, 4College of Engineering, Michigan State University

The goal of the protocol is to optimize the fracture generation parameters to yield consistent fractures. This protocol accounts for the variations in bone size and morphology that may exist between animals. Additionally, a cost-effective, adjustable fracture apparatus is described.

The reliable generation of consistent stabilized fractures in animal models is essential for understanding the biology of bone regeneration and developing therapeutics and devices. However, available injury models are plagued by inconsistency resulting in wasted animals and resources and imperfect data. To address this problem of fracture heterogeneity, the purpose of the method described herein is to optimize fracture generation parameters specific to each animal and yield a consistent fracture location and pattern. This protocol accounts for variations in bone size and morphology that may exist between mouse strains and can be adapted to generate consistent fractures in other species, such as rat. Additionally, a cost-effective, adjustable fracture apparatus is described. Compared to current stabilized fracture techniques, the optimization protocol and new fracture apparatus demonstrate increased consistency in stabilized fracture patterns and locations. Using optimized parameters specific to the sample type, the described protocol increases the precision of induced traumas, minimizing the fracture heterogeneity typically observed in closed-fracture generation procedures.

Research on fracture healing is necessary to address a large clinical and economic problem. Each year over 12 million fractures are treated in the United States1, costing $80 billion per year2. The likelihood of a male or female suffering a fracture in their lifetime is 25% and 44%, respectively3. Problems associated with fracture healing are expected to increase with increased comorbidities as the population ages. To study and address this problem, robust models of fracture generation and stabilization are required. Rodent models are ideally suited for this purpose. They provide clinical relevanc....

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This protocol was developed to ensure that animals are not used needlessly and are spared all unnecessary pain and distress; it adheres to all applicable federal, state, local, and institutional laws and guidelines governing animal research. The protocol was developed under the guidance of a university-wide Laboratory Animal Medicine Program directed by veterinarians specialized in laboratory animal medicine. The protocol was reviewed and approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).

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The guillotine previously used in our laboratory was developed in 2004 and was based on models published by Einhorn21. The design did not permit adjustments to adequately account for any differences in bone morphology and did not permit a reproducible positioning of the limb. Furthermore, the previous apparatus required two people to operate it. Therefore, we designed, engineered, and built a new fracture apparatus. The main design goal was the possibility to the h.......

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This fracture optimization and generation protocol provides researchers with an efficient method to derive at fracture parameters and perform a minimally invasive procedure, which produces precise, repeatable, transverse fractures. Additionally, this protocol establishes a common set of fracture generation parameters, which promotes method consistency amongst researchers. These parameters will enable the creation of a common fracture database to establish fracture standards based on a variety of parameters (e.g........

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The research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health under award number F30AR071201 and R01AR066028.


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Name Company Catalog Number Comments
Support Subassembly Supplementary Figure 1
Beam, Support--Jaw Section  80/20 1003 x 9.00 w/ #7042 at A, C, in Left End
Beam, Support--Horizontal Section 80/20 1002 x 14.00
Beam, Support--Vertical 1 80/20 1050 x 10.50  w/ #7042 at A in Left End and at A in Right End
Beam, Support--Vertical 2 80/20 1010 x 10.50  w/ #7042 at D, B in Left End and at A in Right End
Beam, Support--Plate Mount 80/20 1030 x 8.00  w/ #7036 at Left End
Beam, Support--Magnet 80/20 1010 x 13.50  w/ #7042 at A, C, in Right End
Anchors (3) 80/20 3392
Double Anchor (3) 80/20 3091
Bolt Assembly (6) 80/20 3386 1/4-20 x 3/8"
Button Head Socket Cap Screw (6) 80/20 3604 1/4-20 x 3/4"
Ram Subassembly Supplementary Figure 2
Block, Stop Custom Supplementary Figure 3
Block, Guide Custom Supplementary Figure 3
Rod, Ram Custom Supplementary Figure 4
Alignment Screw Custom Supplementary Figure 5
Plate, Mounting Custom Supplementary Figure 6
Linear Sleeve Bearing (2) McMaster-Carr 8649T2
Hex Nut (3) McMaster-Carr 92673A125 3/8-16 UNC
Socket Cap Screw (8) McMaster-Carr 92196A108 4/40 x 3/8"
Socket Cap Screw (6) McMaster-Carr 92196A032 4/40 x 1 1/8"
Socket Cap Screw (1) McMaster-Carr 92196A267  10/32 3/8"
Magnet Subassembly Supplementary Figure 7
Mount, Magnet Custom Supplementary Figure 8
Power Supply McMaster-Carr 70235K23
Foot Switch McMaster-Carr 7376k2
Electromagnet McMaster-Carr 5698k111
Wire - 10 feet McMaster-Carr 9936k12
Rod, Magnet McMaster-Carr 95412A566 1/4" Threaded Rod x 7"
Corner Bracket (6) 80/20 4108
Socket Cap Screw (1) McMaster-Carr 92196A705 10/32 1 1/4"
Hex Nut (4) McMaster-Carr 92673A113 1/4-20 UNC
Complete Assembly Supplementary Figure 9
Bracket, Leg Jaw (2) Custom Supplementary Figure 10
Platform, Fracture Custom Supplementary Figure 11
Jig, Positioning-Fracture Custom Supplementary Figure 12
Pin Cutter Medical Supplies and Equipment 150S
Needles Sigma Z192430, Z192376  23g x 1.5" - mouse femur, 27g x 1.25" - mouse tibia

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