Effect of high-energy X-ray doses on bone elastic properties and residual strains

A. Singhal*, Alix C. Deymier-Black, J. D. Almer, D. C. Dunand

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Bone X-ray irradiation occurs during medical treatments, sterilization of allografts, space travel and in vitro studies. High doses are known to affect the post-yield properties of bone, but their effect on the bone elastic properties is unclear. The effect of such doses on the mineral-organic interface has also not been adequately addressed. Here, the evolution of elastic properties and residual strains with increasing synchrotron X-ray dose (5-3880 kGy) is examined on bovine cortical bone. It is found that these doses affect neither the degree of nanometer-level load transfer between the hydroxyapatite (HAP) platelets and the collagen up to stresses of -60 MPa nor the microscopic modulus of collagen fibrils (both measured by synchrotron X-ray scattering during repeated in situ loading and unloading). However, the residual elastic strains in the HAP phase decrease markedly with increased irradiation, indicating damage at the HAP-collagen interface. The HAP residual strain also decreases after repeated loading/unloading cycles. These observations can be explained by temporary de-bonding at the HAP/collagen interface (thus reducing the residual strain), followed by rapid re-bonding (so that load transfer capability is not affected).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1774-1786
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 2011


  • Apparent modulus
  • Interface
  • Irradiation
  • Residual strain
  • X-rays

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials

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