Endochondral ossification is a process that is involved in the formation of long, short and irregular bones from a hyaline cartilage template. The process begins with blood vessels invading and branching out within, the cartilaginous template that is destined to become a bone. This event leads to the formation of the primary ossification center, which occurs around the fetus’s third month of life. Once inside the blood vessels begin to secrete osteoprogenitor and hematopoietic cells, which promote the formation of the periosteum and lead to the ossification at the diaphysis. The periosteum not only defines the formation of the primary ossification center but also contributes to the overall ossification process by providing precursor osteoblasts. The osteoprogenitor and hematopoietic cells can contribute to the apoptosis of calcification of the cartilage matrix. In particular the osteoprogenitor cells travel to the core of the cartilaginous model where they differentiate into osteoblasts and begin secreting the bone matrix known as osteoid. Once the primary ossification centers have formed, after birth, the secondary ossification centers begin to form at the epiphyses. This process is similar to the formation of the primary ossification centers and also begins with the invasion of blood vessels. This leads to the arrival of the osteoprogenitor cells that will cause the cartilage to be replaced with the spongy bone. After both ossification centers have been established the majority of the cartilage within the original model will be replaced, with the exception of the epiphyseal plate and the articular cartilage. The epiphyseal plate will serve as a point of longitudinal bone growth in adults while the articular cartilage will serve to help joints articulate without friction.
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Bone formation, Hyaline cartilage, Endochondral ossification, Osteoid
Ching-Jung Chen, Sara Daoud, Abraham Kierszenbaum, Robert Levy, Jazmine Rogers, Aleksandr Vinkler
The City College Libraries, New York, New York
Endochondral Ossification by City College of New York Digital Scholarship Services is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.