Visualization of pressure distribution within loaded joint cartilage by application of angle-sensitive NMR microscopy

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review


  • Wilfried Gründer - , Leipzig University (Author)
  • Martin Kanowski - , Leipzig University (Author)
  • Manuela Wagner - , Leipzig University (Author)
  • Annett Werner - , Leipzig University (Author)


High-resolution MRI measurements on knee joints show a multilaminar appearance of the cartilage. This intracartilaginar structure, visualized as hypointense zones in T2-weighted MR images is based on the dipolar interaction of water molecules within regions of anisotropic arrangement of collagen network. Using the different angle dependence of the MR signal, zones of radially and tangentially oriented network structures can be distinguished. Information equivalent to that from polarization light microscopy can be derived noninvasively. This is demonstrated by polarization light microscopic reference investigations. It is shown that this multilaminar MRI appearance is sensitively influenced by mechanical stress. A model explaining the contrary behavior of loaded tangential and radial network structures is given. Based on this pressure dependence, a noninvasive determination of mechanical properties is possible. Using the variation of size and intensity of the hypointense zones under pressure, dynamic high resolution MRI yields noninvasive information about the intracartilaginar pressure distribution similar to photoelastic measurements. (C) 2000 Wiley- Liss, Inc.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)884-891
Number of pages8
Journal Magnetic resonance in medicine : an official journal of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes

External IDs

PubMed 10861884
ORCID /0000-0001-8204-5699/work/154738449



  • Cartilage stress behavior, Collagen network transformation, MR-microscopy

Library keywords