Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Prediction of Collagen and Glycosaminoglycan Content by Acoustic Microscopy



Jenni R. Popp, Colm Flannery, Tammy L. Oreskovic, Jennifer Recknor, Kristi S. Anseth, Timothy P. Quinn


Functional tissue engineering of articular cartilage is rapidly advancing as a technique to develop regenerative and reparative treatments for cartilage degeneration and osteoarthritis. Tissue engineered constructs are often developed using a combination of cells, polymer scaffolds, biochemical mediators, and mechanical cues, and are then evaluated by a variety of histological, biochemical, and mechanical techniques. However, testing methods are often time-consuming and destructive to the construct; creating the need for real-time, non-destructive measurement techniques. High frequency ultrasound has been demonstrated as a technique sensitive to mechanical and biochemical properties of cartilage. The objective of this research was to investigate the correlation between attenuated reflection coefficient and the concentration of collagen and glycosaminoglycan (GAG) in enzymatically degraded bovine articular cartilage, with implications for evaluating the quality of tissue engineered cartilage during development. Bovine articular cartilage explants were digested in type II collagenase for 1, 2, 3, or 4 h. Biochemical assays and histological staining for collagen and proteoglycan and were used to characterize samples. Acoustic microscopy with a 50 MHz acoustic transducer was used to image samples and to extract information about changing tissue properties and their relationship to high frequency ultrasonic wave propagation properties. Attenuated reflection coefficient is directly correlated with the concentration of both GAG and collagen in bovine articular cartilage. These results have implications for the use of ultrasonic acoustic microscopy to non-destructively evaluate the development of tissue engineered cartilage.
Proceedings Title
Proceedings of the 2010 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Society for Biomaterials
Conference Dates
April 21-24, 2010
Conference Location
Seattle, WA, US
Conference Title
2010 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Society for Biomaterials


tissue engineered cartilage, acoustic microscopy, glycosaminoglycan, collagen, attenuated reflection coefficient


Popp, J. , Flannery, C. , Oreskovic, T. , Recknor, J. , Anseth, K. and Quinn, T. (2010), Prediction of Collagen and Glycosaminoglycan Content by Acoustic Microscopy, Proceedings of the 2010 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Society for Biomaterials, Seattle, WA, US, [online], (Accessed July 18, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created April 20, 2010, Updated October 12, 2021