A proposed model of naturally occurring osteoarthritis in the domestic rabbit

Lab Anim (NY). 2011 Dec 19;41(1):20-5. doi: 10.1038/laban0112-20.


Osteoarthritis affects one in eight American adults over the age of 25 y and is a leading cause of chronic disability in the US. Translational research to investigate treatments for this naturally occurring joint disease requires an appropriate animal model. The authors conducted a retrospective study to assess the potential of naturally occurring osteoarthritis in the domestic rabbit as a model of the human disease. Analysis of radiographic images showed that the presence and severity of osteoarthritis were significantly influenced by both age and body weight. The most commonly affected joints were the knee and the hip. The findings reported here suggest that the rabbit is an excellent model of spontaneously arising osteoarthritis that may be useful in translational research pertaining to the human disease.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Arthrography / methods*
  • Body Weight
  • California
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Female
  • Hindlimb / diagnostic imaging
  • Hindlimb / pathology
  • Hip / diagnostic imaging
  • Hip / pathology
  • Humans
  • Joints / pathology
  • Male
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / diagnostic imaging
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / epidemiology*
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / pathology*
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / diagnostic imaging
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / epidemiology*
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / pathology*
  • Prevalence
  • Rabbits*
  • Reference Standards
  • Retrospective Studies