Correlations between osteocalcin content, degree of mineralization, and mechanical properties of C. carpio rib bone. Academic Article uri icon


  • Osteocalcin is one of the most abundant noncollagenous proteins in bone. It is strongly associated with the mineral phase of bone, and has long been associated as a marker of bone turnover. However, its relationship to bone composition, strength, and structure is unclear. Carp rib bone is an excellent model for the study, because osteocalcin represents almost 60% of the total extractable noncollagenous proteins found in it. Because of the abundance of osteocalcin relative to other extractable proteins, any changes in the properties of carp rib bone would be more likely influenced by the osteocalcin concentration. To test the hypotheses that the concentration of osteocalcin is reflected in other properties of bone, the correlations between the osteocalcin concentration and the mineral content, microstructural properties, and physical characteristics of the bone mineral crystals were determined utilizing radioimmunoassay (RIA), spectrophotometry, nanoindentation, and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) techniques, respectively. Osteocalcin concentration was found to be correlated to the molar Ca/P ratio and inversely correlated to the elastic modulus and hardness in the longitudinal plane. This study provides evidence for a putative relationship between the concentration of osteocalcin and the microstructural mechanical properties of bone. Correlations were also found between the mechanical properties in the longitudinal plane and both the phosphate content and the molar Ca/P ratio. However, no relationships could be identified between osteocalcin concentration and several parameters of bone crystals, as determined by SAXS.

published proceedings

  • J Biomed Mater Res

author list (cited authors)

  • Roy, M. E., Nishimoto, S. K., Rho, J. Y., Bhattacharya, S. K., Lin, J. S., & Pharr, G. M.

citation count

  • 43

complete list of authors

  • Roy, ME||Nishimoto, SK||Rho, JY||Bhattacharya, SK||Lin, JS||Pharr, GM

publication date

  • March 2001