Ashley Nicole Lipps

Osteoarthritis and Osteophytosis : a comparative study of Aging in the Rhesus Macaque (Macaca mulatta)

Age-related bone loss and osteoarthritis have been exhibited in several mammalian species, and both are especially common in humans. However, the etiology behind age-related bone loss is highly complicated and osteoarthritis is especially unstudied. Previous studies have relied on rodent models and have primarily investigated changes in BMD (Bone Mineral Density); however several weaknesses are associated with both approaches. I will be using Macaca mulatta, a similar species to humans with analogous bone remodeling processes in both cancellous and cortical bone. I will be using two methods: 1) histomorphometric analysis of rib microstructure and 2) physical scoring of vertebral osteoarthritis and osteophytosis. My analysis will thoroughly track the progression of bone loss and disease from maturation to old age.

Message to Sponsor

Im absolutely thrilled to be a part of SURF this summer! Although Ive had the opportunity to dabble in a few other research projects this year at Berkeley, this is the first chance Ive had to do original research. This is a wonderful opportunity for me to synthesize all of my previous experience into a successful project of my own. Im particularly grateful that I can devote all of my time to the project. During the year, my responsibilities as a researcher always came second to my responsibilities as a student. Im also excited to meet and converse with other student researchers, since I was never able to meet other URAPers during the year.
  • Major: Anthropology, Integrative Biology
  • Mentor: Sabrina Agarwal, Anthropology