author: Lanyon LE, Rubin CT, Baust G.
publication: Calcif Tissue Int. 1986 Apr;38(4):209-16.
Changes in the midshaft cross-sectional area of the ulna were measured in egg-laying turkeys on a diet insufficient in calcium. Left:right comparisons were used to assess the bone loss over a six-week period due to 1) calcium insufficiency, 2) calcium insufficiency plus disuse, and 3) calcium insufficiency and disuse interrupted by a short daily period of intermittent loading applied from an external device. Calcium insufficiency alone in the intact ulna resulted in a 15% reduction in cross-sectional area. In the functionally deprived bones this loss was increased to 32%. In bones where the disuse was interrupted by a single short daily period of loading, the degree of bone loss was significantly modified (P less than 0.006) to 25%. No significant difference in the modulating effect of loading was achieved by varying the peak strain from 0.0015 to 0.003, the strain rate from 0.01 to 0.05, or the duration of the single loading period from 100 sec per day to 25 minutes. All the loading regimes employed had been demonstrated to be osteogenic in mature male birds on a diet sufficient in calcium.
author: Rubin CT, Lanyon LE.
publication: Calcif Tissue Int. 1985 Jul;37(4):411-7.
The in vivo remodeling behavior within a bone protected from natural loading was modified over an 8-week period by daily application of 100 consecutive 1 Hz load cycles engendering strains within the bone tissue of physiological rate and magnitude. This load regime resulted in a graded dose:response relationship between the peak strain magnitude and change in the mass of bone tissue present. Peak longitudinal strains below 0.001 were associated with bone loss which was achieved by increased remodeling activity, endosteal resorption, and increased intra-cortical porosis. Peak strains above 0.001 were associated with little change in intra-cortical remodeling activity but substantial periosteal and endosteal new bone formation.
author: Cullen DM, Smith RT, Akhter MP.
publication: J Appl Physiol. 2001 Nov;91(5):1971-6.
Mechanical loading stimulates bone formation and regulates bone size, shape, and strength. It is recognized that strain magnitude, strain rate, and frequency are variables that explain bone stimulation. Early loading studies have shown that a low number (36) of cycles/day (cyc) induced maximal bone formation when strains were high (2,000 microepsilon) (Rubin CT and Lanyon LE. J Bone Joint Surg Am 66: 397-402, 1984). This study examines whether cycle number directly affects the bone response to loading and whether cycle number for activation of formation varies with load magnitude at low frequency. The adult rat tibiae were loaded in four-point bending at 25 (-800 microepsilon) or 30 N (-1,000 microepsilon) for 0, 40, 120, or 400 cyc at 2 Hz for 3 wk. Differences in periosteal and endocortical formation were examined by histomorphometry. Loading did not stimulate bone formation at 40 cyc. Compared with control tibiae, tibiae loaded at -800 microepsilon showed 2.8-fold greater periosteal bone formation rate at 400 cyc but no differences in endocortical formation. Tibiae loaded at -1,000 microepsilon and 120 or 400 cyc had 8- to 10-fold greater periosteal formation rate, 2- to 3-fold greater formation surface, and 1-fold greater endocortical formation surface than control. As applied load or strain magnitude decreased, the number of cyc required for activation of formation increased. We conclude that, at constant frequency, the number of cyc required to activate formation is dependent on strain and that, as number of cyc increases, the bone response increases.