Using new state-of-the-art imaging techniques to identify signs of osteoarthritis (OA), UniSA scientists are learning more about changes at the molecular level which indicate the severity of cartilage damage.
A study led by PhD student Olivia Lee and her supervisor Associate Professor Paul Anderson using mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) has mapped complex sugars on OA cartilage, showing different sugars are associated with damaged tissue compared to healthy tissue.
The finding will potentially help overcome one of the main challenges of osteoarthritis research — identifying why cartilage degrades at different rates in the body.
“Despite its prevalence in the community, there is a lot about osteoarthritis that we don’t understand,” Prof Anderson says.
“It is one of the most common degenerative joint diseases, yet there are limited diagnostic tools, few treatment options and no cure.”
Existing OA biomarkers are still largely focused on bodily fluids which are neither reliable nor sensitive
Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst have identified a single-measure biomarker in sperm mitochondrial DNA that may predict male reproductive health and pregnancy success.
The discovery applies not just to couples seeking care for infertility but also for the general population. This biomarker could become a more accurate predictor of male infertility than semen parameters, on which health care organizations and clinicians have long relied.
“Clinically, the diagnosis of male infertility really hasn’t changed in decades,” says UMass Amherst environmental epigeneticist Richard Pilsner, corresponding author of the study published today, Oct. 6, in the journal Human Reproduction. “In the last 10 to 20 years, there have been major advances in the understanding of the molecular and cellular functions of sperm, but the clinical diagnosis hasn’t changed or caught up.”
In addition to Pilsner, the team of UMass researchers included lead author Allyson Rosati, who wrote the paper as