University of Oulu

Cui, A., Nippolainen, E., Shaikh, R. et al. Assessment of Ligament Viscoelastic Properties Using Raman Spectroscopy. Ann Biomed Eng 50, 1134–1142 (2022).

Assessment of ligament viscoelastic properties using raman spectroscopy

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Author: Cui, Andy1; Nippolainen, Ervin2; Shaikh, Rubina2,3;
Organizations: 1School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
2Department of Applied Physics, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland
3Department of Orthopedics, Traumatology and Hand Surgery, Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio, Finland
4AO Research Institute Davos, Davos, Switzerland
5Research Unit of Medical Imaging, Physics and Technology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
6Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland
7Human Performance Lab, Faculty of Kinesiology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada
8Science Service Center, Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.7 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Springer Nature, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-12-07


Injuries to the ligaments of the knee commonly impact vulnerable and physically active individuals. These injuries can lead to the development of degenerative diseases such as post-traumatic osteoarthritis (PTOA). Non-invasive optical modalities, such as infrared and Raman spectroscopy, provide means for quantitative evaluation of knee joint tissues and have been proposed as potential quantitative diagnostic tools for arthroscopy. In this study, we evaluate Raman spectroscopy as a viable tool for estimating functional properties of collateral ligaments. Artificial trauma was induced by anterior cruciate ligament transection (ACLT) in the left or right knee joint of skeletally mature New Zealand rabbits. The corresponding contralateral (CL) samples were extracted from healthy unoperated joints along with a separate group of control (CNTRL) animals. The rabbits were sacrificed at 8 weeks after ACLT. The ligaments were then harvested and measured using Raman spectroscopy. A uniaxial tensile stress-relaxation testing protocol was adopted for determining several biomechanical properties of the samples. Partial least squares (PLS) regression models were then employed to correlate the spectral data with the biomechanical properties. Results show that the capacity of Raman spectroscopy for estimating the biomechanical properties of the ligament samples varies depending on the target property, with prediction error ranging from 15.78% for tissue cross-sectional area to 30.39% for stiffness. The hysteresis under cyclic loading at 2 Hz (RMSE = 6.22%, Normalized RMSE = 22.24%) can be accurately estimated from the Raman data which describes the viscous damping properties of the tissue. We conclude that Raman spectroscopy has the potential for non-destructively estimating ligament biomechanical properties in health and disease, thus enhancing the diagnostic value of optical arthroscopic evaluations of ligament integrity.

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Series: Annals of biomedical engineering
ISSN: 0090-6964
ISSN-E: 1573-9686
ISSN-L: 0090-6964
Volume: 50
Issue: 9
Pages: 1134 - 1142
DOI: 10.1007/s10439-022-02988-z
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 217 Medical engineering
114 Physical sciences
Funding: Open access funding provided by University of Eastern Finland (UEF) including Kuopio University Hospital. Dr. Afara acknowledges funding support from Academy of Finland (Project 315820). This study was also supported by Academy of Finland Projects of Professor Töyräs (267551), Professor Korhonen (286526, 324529), and Professor Saarakkala (303786). State research funding (Kuopio University Hospital VTR Projects 5041750 and 5041744: Professor Töyräs) and Sigrid Juselius Foundation (Professor Korhonen) are also acknowledged. Professor Herzog acknowledges the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Killam Foundation and the Canada Research Chair Program. Dr. Finnila acknowledges strategic funding from the University of Eastern Finland.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 303786
Detailed Information: 303786 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
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