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Open AccessReview

The Role of Mechanical Stimulation in Recovery of Bone Loss—High versus Low Magnitude and Frequency of Force

National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Houston, TX 77058, USA
Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University, Health Sciences Research Building, E170, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Life 2014, 4(2), 117-130;
Received: 19 February 2014 / Revised: 25 March 2014 / Accepted: 25 March 2014 / Published: 2 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Response of Terrestrial Life to Space Conditions)
Musculoskeletal pathologies associated with decreased bone mass, including osteoporosis and disuse-induced bone loss, affect millions of Americans annually. Microgravity-induced bone loss presents a similar concern for astronauts during space missions. Many pharmaceutical treatments have slowed osteoporosis, and recent data shows promise for countermeasures for bone loss observed in astronauts. Additionally, high magnitude and low frequency impact such as running has been recognized to increase bone and muscle mass under normal but not microgravity conditions. However, a low magnitude and high frequency (LMHF) mechanical load experienced in activities such as postural control, has also been shown to be anabolic to bone. While several clinical trials have demonstrated that LMHF mechanical loading normalizes bone loss in vivo, the target tissues and cells of the mechanical load and underlying mechanisms mediating the responses are unknown. In this review, we provide an overview of bone adaptation under a variety of loading profiles and the potential for a low magnitude loading as a way to counteract bone loss as experienced by astronauts. View Full-Text
Keywords: bone loss; astronauts; spaceflight; mechanical stimulation bone loss; astronauts; spaceflight; mechanical stimulation
MDPI and ACS Style

Nagaraja, M.P.; Jo, H. The Role of Mechanical Stimulation in Recovery of Bone Loss—High versus Low Magnitude and Frequency of Force. Life 2014, 4, 117-130.

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