Assessment of compressive modulus, hydraulic permeability and matrix content of trypsin-treated nucleus pulposus using quantitative MRI

D. Périé, J. C. Iatridis, C. N. Demers, T. Goswami, G. Beaudoin, F. Mwale, J. Antoniou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


A clinical strength MRI and intact bovine caudal intervertebral discs were used to test the hypotheses that (1) mechanical loading and trypsin treatment induce changes in NMR parameters, mechanical properties and biochemical contents; and (2) mechanical properties are quantitatively related to NMR parameters. MRI acquisitions, confined compression stress-relaxation experiments, and biochemical assays were applied to determine the NMR parameters (relaxation times T 1 and T 2, magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) and diffusion trace (TrD)), mechanical properties (compressive modulus HA 0 and hydraulic permeability k0), and biochemical contents (H2O, proteoglycan and total collagen) of nucleus pulposus tissue from bovine caudal discs subjected to one of two injections and one of two mechanical loading conditions. Significant correlations were found between k0 and T 1 ( r = 0.75, p = 0.03), T 2 ( r = 0.78, p = 0.02), and TrD ( r = 0.85, p = 0.007). A trend was found between HA 0 and TrD ( r = 0.56, p = 0.12). However, loading decreased these correlations ( r {less-than or slanted equal to} 0.4, p {greater than or slanted equal to} 0.2). The significant effect of trypsin treatment on mechanical properties, but not on NMR parameters, may suggest that mechanical properties are more sensitive to the structural changes induced by trypsin treatment. The significant effect of loading on T 1 and T 2, but not on HA 0 or k0, may suggest that NMR parameters are more sensitive to the changes in water content enhanced by loading. We conclude that MRI offers promise as a sensitive and non-invasive technique for describing alterations in material properties of intervertebral disc nucleus, and our results demonstrate that the hydraulic permeability correlated more strongly to the quantitative NMR parameters than did the compressive modulus; however, more studies are necessary to more precisely characterize these relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1392-1400
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Confined compression
  • Correlations
  • Diffusion
  • Mechanical properties
  • Nucleus pulposus
  • Quantitative MRI


Dive into the research topics of 'Assessment of compressive modulus, hydraulic permeability and matrix content of trypsin-treated nucleus pulposus using quantitative MRI'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this