In-vitro testing procedures have been successfully developed to investigate the effects of tribological process induced transformation of protein-based lubricant on the friction change of articular cartilages. Serum and albumin solutions were the biological lubricants used in this study. The results indicated that the lubricating ability for cartilages deteriorates after the biological lubricants were articulated between polyethylene and stainless steel materials. In addition, the secondary structure change of the albumin molecule has been characterized after the molecules were articulated by the artificial joint materials. We have provided evidence that the conformational change of protein lubricants leads to the friction increase of articular cartilage.
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