Global and Spatial Compartmental Interrelationships of Bone Density, Microstructure, Geometry and Biomechanics in the Distal Radius in a Colles’ Fracture Study Using HR-pQCT

Kazuteru Shiraishi, Andrew J. Burghardt, Makoto Osaki, Sundeep Khosla, Julio Carballido-Gamio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Bone parameters derived from HR-pQCT have been investigated on a parameter-by-parameter basis for different clinical conditions. However, little is known regarding the interrelationships of bone parameters and the spatial distribution of these interrelationships. In this work: 1) we investigate compartmental interrelationships of bone parameters; 2) assess the spatial distribution of interrelationships of bone parameters; and 3) compare interrelationships of bone parameters between postmenopausal women with and without a recent Colles’ fracture. Methods: Images from the unaffected radius in fracture cases (n=84), and from the non-dominant radius of controls (n=98) were obtained using HR-pQCT. Trabecular voxel-based maps of local bone volume fraction (L.Tb.BV/TV), homogenized volumetric bone mineral density (H.Tb.BMD), homogenized μFEA-derived strain energy density (H.Tb.SED), and homogenized inter-trabecular distances (H.Tb.1/N) were generated; as well as surface-based maps of apparent cortical bone thickness (, porosity-weighted cortical bone thickness (Surf.Ct.SIT), mean cortical BMD (Surf.Ct.BMD), and mean cortical SED (Surf.Ct.SED). Anatomical correspondences across the parametric maps in the study were established via spatial normalization to a common template. Mean values of the parametric maps before spatial normalization were used to assess compartmental Spearman’s rank partial correlations of bone parameters (e.g., between H.Tb.BMD and L.Tb.BV/TV or between Surf.Ct.BMD and Spearman’s rank partial correlations were also assessed for each voxel and vertex of the spatially normalized parametric maps, thus generating maps of Spearman’s rank partial correlation coefficients. Correlations were performed independently within each group, and compared between groups using the Fisher’s Z transformation. Results: All within-group global trabecular and cortical Spearman’s rank partial correlations were significant; and the correlations of H.Tb.BMD–L.Tb.BV/TV, H.Tb.BMD–H.Tb.1/N, L.Tb.BV/TV–H.Tb.1/N, Surf.Ct.BMD–Surf.Ct.SED and Surf.Ct.SIT–Surf.Ct.SED were significantly different between controls and fracture cases. The spatial analyses revealed significant heterogeneous voxel- and surface-based correlation coefficient maps across the distal radius for both groups; and the correlation maps of H.Tb.BMD–L.Tb.BV/TV, H.Tb.BMD–H.Tb.1/N, L.Tb.BV/TV–H.Tb.1/N, H.Tb.1/N–H.Tb.SED and - Surf.Ct.SIT yielded small clusters of significant correlation differences between groups. Discussion: The heterogeneous spatial distribution of interrelationships of bone parameters assessing density, microstructure, geometry and biomechanics, along with their global and local differences between controls and fracture cases, may help us further understand different bone mechanisms of bone fracture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number568454
JournalFrontiers in Endocrinology
StatePublished - May 26 2021


  • Colles’ fracture
  • HR-pQCT (high-resolution peripheral quantitative computed tomography)
  • bone
  • interrelationships
  • spatial analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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