What would life be without bone? Bone (greek “osteo”) is a dense connective tissue, which enables locomotion, gives shape to a body, protects vital organs and harbours hematopoietic stem cells, which continuously produce new blood cells. Additionally, bone is used as reservoir for calcium and phosphates and helps to maintain stable blood levels of those ions. Bone consists of two tissues: cortical bone (80%) and trabecular bone (20%). The cortical bone is a compact tissue with a porosity of 5-30%. Within the cavity of cortical bone the bone marrow is located. Those cavities are partially supported by a spongy-like network of trabecular bone. The porosity of trabecular bone is 30-90%, depending on the location. By having a strong sponge-like inner network of trabecular bone the strength of the cortical bone is maximized.

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The work was funded by Marie Curie RTN NucSys, ZonMW TOP Grant, Netherlands Genomics Initiative (NGI) and the Erasmus Medical Center. Publication of this thesis was financially supported by: Dutch Arthritis Foundation (Reumafonds) Nederlandse Vereniging voor Calcium- en Botstofwisseling
J.P.T.M. van Leeuwen (Hans)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

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