Researchers can collect large amounts of biochemical information from nanoscale bone samples thanks to a new technique developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Along with adding important new insights into the fight against osteoporosis, this innovation opens up an entirely new proteomics-based approach to analyzing bone quality. It could even aid the archeological and forensic study of human skeletons.
"We're able to take very small, nanoscale-sized bone samples, and determine the protein signatures of the bone," said Deepak Vashishth, head of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Rensselaer, who led the study. "This is a relatively quick, easy way for us to determine the history of the bone - how and when it formed - as well as the quality of the bone, and its likelihood to fracture."
Results of the study, titled "Biochemical Characterization of Major Bone-Matrix Proteins Using Nanoscale-Size Bone Samples and Proteomics Methodology," were released online in late May by the journal Molecular & Cellular Proteomics.
The journal, published by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, will also feature the paper in an upcoming print edition. The study may be viewed online at: http://bit.ly/lAfSfI