eCM (Eur Cell Mater / e Cells & Materials) Not-for-Profit Open Access
Created by Scientists, for Scientists
 ISSN:1473-2262         NLM:100973416 (link)         DOI:10.22203/eCM

2020   Volume No 40 – pages 172-188

Title: Animal models for studying metaphyseal bone fracture healing

Authors: M Haffner-Luntzer, A Ignatius

Address: Institute of Orthopaedic Research and Biomechanics, University Medical Centre Ulm, Germany

E-mail: melanie.haffner-luntzer at

Abstract: An estimated 2 million osteoporotic fractures occur annually in the US, resulting in a dramatic reduction in quality of life for affected patients and a high economic burden for society. Osteoporotic fractures are frequently located in metaphyseal bone regions. They are often associated with healing complications, because of the reduced healing capacity of the diseased bone tissue, the poor primary stability of the fracture fixation in the fragile bone, and the high frequency of comorbidities in these patients. Therefore, osteoporotic fractures require optimised treatment strategies to ensure proper bone healing. Preclinical animal models can help understanding of the underlying mechanisms and development of new therapies. However, whereas diaphyseal fracture models are widely available, appropriate animal models for metaphyseal fracture healing are scarce, although essential for translational research. This review covers large and small animal models for metaphyseal fracture healing. General requirements for suitable animal models are presented, as well as advantages and disadvantages of the current models. Furthermore, differences and similarities between metaphyseal and diaphyseal bone fracture healing are discussed. Both large- and small-animal models are available for studying metaphyseal fracture healing, which mainly differ in fracture location and geometry as well as stabilisation techniques. Most common used fracture sites are distal femur and proximal tibia. Each model found in the literature has certain advantages and disadvantages; however, many lack standardisation resulting in a high variability or poor mimicking of the clinical situation. Therefore, further refinement ofanimal models is needed especially to study osteoporotic metaphyseal fracture healing.

Key Words: Fracture healing, animal models, metaphyseal fractures, bone regeneration.

Publication date: October 29th 2020

Article download: Pages 172-188 (PDF file)

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