A comprehensive review of mouse diaphyseal femur fracture models

Zachary J. Gunderson, Zachery R. Campbell, Todd O. McKinley, Roman M. Natoli, Melissa A. Kacena

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Complications related to treatment of long bone fractures still stand as a major challenge for orthopaedic surgeons. Elucidation of the mechanisms of bone healing and development, and the subsequent alteration of these mechanisms to improve outcomes, typically requires animal models as an intermediary between in vitro and human clinical studies. Murine models are some of the most commonly used in translational research, and mouse fracture models are particularly diverse, offering a wide variety of customization with distinct benefits and limitations depending on the study. This review critically examines three common femur fracture models in the mouse, namely cortical hole, 3-point fracture (Einhorn), and segmental bone defect. We lay out the general procedure for execution of each model, evaluate the practical implications and important advantages/disadvantages of each and describe recent innovations. Furthermore, we explore the applications that each model is best adapted for in the context of the current state of murine orthopaedic research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1439-1447
Number of pages9
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2020


  • Animal models
  • Bone healing
  • Defect
  • Fracture
  • Mouse
  • Segmental defect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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  • Cite this

    Gunderson, Z. J., Campbell, Z. R., McKinley, T. O., Natoli, R. M., & Kacena, M. A. (2020). A comprehensive review of mouse diaphyseal femur fracture models. Injury, 51(7), 1439-1447. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.injury.2020.04.011