Disc degeneration and associated back and neck pain elicits a substantial burden on healthcare systems and the individuals affected, necessitating the development of novel therapeutic strategies. This goal can only be achieved by a better understanding of intervertebral disc development, homeostasis and pathogenesis. A number of genetic and in-bred murine models are reviewed to underscore the importance of the mouse as an animal model of choice for the assessment of intervertebral disc pathobiology. Appraisals of the differences between mouse and human musculoskeletal systems and proteoglycan structures are also included. A number of important target pathways and molecules have been identified, many of which are worthy of further examination, requiring that the activity of these be confirmed in large animal models and assessed in the context of therapeutic intervention.
Recommended CitationMelrose, J.; Tessier, S.; and Risbud, M. V., "Genetic murine models of spinal development and degeneration provide valuable insights into intervertebral disc pathobiology." (2021). Department of Orthopaedic Surgery Faculty Papers. Paper 151.
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