Edition V18N04 | Year 2013 | Editorial Original Article | Pages 82 to 88
Introduction: Biological age is an important parameter for growth and development assessment. It can be evaluated through the observation of radiographic changes in skeletal maturation of cervical vertebrae.
Objective: This study aims to: a) verify if there is correlation between growth curve and the stages of bone age of animals used in laboratories, by evaluating radiographs of the cervical vertebrae; b) correlate these stages with their correspondents in humans.
Methods: 35 Wistar rats were evaluated for a period of 160 days, starting at day 22nd (weaning), with cross sections for periodic weighing, length measurement and digital radiography. Radiographs of the cervical vertebrae (C2 and C3) were measured by means of a computer program (Radio IMP). Data were submitted to statistical analysis (ANOVA) and Pearson correlation.
Results: Growth spurt was characterized by fast increasing in weight and length. Through ANOVA, differences were observed in the cervical measurements between days 22, 97, 127, 157, 187 and 217 (p < 0.001). A high correlation was found between increasing in body length and weight, as well as in cervical vertebrae height (r = 0.86). Increments in concavities of vertebrae were also observed, similar to humans. Conclusions: There is correlation between body growth and maturation of cervical vertebrae in rats. Despite the continuous development of concavities, it was not possible to clearly identify the 5/6 stages as in studies of cervical vertebrae maturation in humans. Growth and development, Cervical vertebrae, Radiography,