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Characterisation of articular cartilage by micro-beam Raman spectroscopy

Fields, M; (2016) Characterisation of articular cartilage by micro-beam Raman spectroscopy. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The Raman spectrum of cartilage contains detailed information on the composition and structural state of the biochemical components of the tissue. The advantage of Raman spectroscopy over traditional methods of chemical analysis such as chemical assay and histology, is the ability to interrogate tissue composition of samples without the need for addition of markers and sample manipulation. This work first presents reference spectra for collagen and proteoglycan that are the main contributors to the Raman signal of cartilage tissue. Further work involving D2O/H2O exchange investigated the exchangeable hydrogen atoms that contribute to the spectrum. Micro-Raman spectroscopic mapping was used to examine the distribution of proteoglycan, as a function of depth within tissue samples, from the cartilage surface to the cartilage-bone interface, comparing data for specimens obtained from a young (9 years old) and a more mature individual (62 years old). We showed that the proteoglycan increases as a function of depth and was greater in the tissue from the younger specimen, using peaks from the reference spectrum of proteoglycan to demonstrate this. We then examined the thermal degradation of cartilage using in situ Raman spectroscopy during heating. Previous data had been interpreted in terms of a denaturation event. Our results indicate, that protonation of carboxylic acid groups occurs in freeze-dried samples of articular cartilage and collagen heated to 120°C. Thermogravimetric analysis also revealed hydrous component remaining in freeze-dried cartilage. They provide a new interpretation of the structural changes that occur during heating.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Characterisation of articular cartilage by micro-beam Raman spectroscopy
Event: UCL
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1501165
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