The program supports three primary research areas: clinical osteoarthritis; bone quality and skeletal imaging; and human genetics of bone and cartilage. Within each of these portfolio areas, studies emphasize the following:

Clinical osteoarthritis and the Osteoarthritis Initiative:

  • Epidemiology and pathogenesis of osteoarthritis.
  • Physical, environmental and genetic risk factors for osteoarthritis.
  • Treatment, prevention, and diagnosis of osteoarthritis.
  • Novel imaging methods for cartilage and joints.

Bone quality and skeletal imaging:

  • In vivo methods for macro and micro scale imaging of bone.
  • Architecture and mechanical properties of bone.
  • Multi-scale modeling of the human bone.
  • Assessment of bone quality.
  • Clinical studies related to bone strength and density.

Human genetics of bone and cartilage:

  • Genetic/genomic epidemiology.
  • Gene discovery and high throughput technologies.
  • Gene-environment interactions.

Contact Us

Xincheng Zheng, M.D., PhD.

Program Director
6701 Democracy Boulevard
Building: Democracy 1, Room: 870
Bethesda MD 20892-4872

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The Division of Musculoskeletal Diseases supports research aimed at improving the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system and its component tissues.


See all Scientific Areas in the Division of Musculoskeletal Diseases


Last Updated: July 2019