A 3D musculoskeletal model of the western lowland gorilla hind limb: moment arms and torque of the hip, knee and ankle.
ABSTRACT: Three-dimensional musculoskeletal models have become increasingly common for investigating muscle moment arms in studies of vertebrate locomotion. In this study we present the first musculoskeletal model of a western lowland gorilla hind limb. Moment arms of individual muscles around the hip, knee and ankle were compared with previously published data derived from the experimental tendon travel method. Considerable differences were found which we attribute to the different methodologies in this specific case. In this instance, we argue that our 3D model provides more accurate and reliable moment arm data than previously published data on the gorilla because our model incorporates more detailed consideration of the 3D geometry of muscles and the geometric constraints that exist on their lines-of-action about limb joints. Our new data have led us to revaluate the previous conclusion that muscle moment arms in the gorilla hind limb are optimised for locomotion with crouched or flexed limb postures. Furthermore, we found that bipedalism and terrestrial quadrupedalism coincided more regularly with higher moment arms and torque around the hip, knee and ankle than did vertical climbing. This indicates that the ability of a gorilla to walk bipedally is not restricted by musculoskeletal adaptations for quadrupedalism and vertical climbing, at least in terms of moment arms and torque about hind limb joints.
Project description:Wearable robotic devices can restore and enhance mobility. There is growing interest in designing devices that reduce the metabolic cost of walking; however, designers lack guidelines for which joints to assist and when to provide the assistance. To help address this problem, we used musculoskeletal simulation to predict how hypothetical devices affect muscle activity and metabolic cost when walking with heavy loads. We explored 7 massless devices, each providing unrestricted torque at one degree of freedom in one direction (hip abduction, hip flexion, hip extension, knee flexion, knee extension, ankle plantarflexion, or ankle dorsiflexion). We used the Computed Muscle Control algorithm in OpenSim to find device torque profiles that minimized the sum of squared muscle activations while tracking measured kinematics of loaded walking without assistance. We then examined the metabolic savings provided by each device, the corresponding device torque profiles, and the resulting changes in muscle activity. We found that the hip flexion, knee flexion, and hip abduction devices provided greater metabolic savings than the ankle plantarflexion device. The hip abduction device had the greatest ratio of metabolic savings to peak instantaneous positive device power, suggesting that frontal-plane hip assistance may be an efficient way to reduce metabolic cost. Overall, the device torque profiles generally differed from the corresponding net joint moment generated by muscles without assistance, and occasionally exceeded the net joint moment to reduce muscle activity at other degrees of freedom. Many devices affected the activity of muscles elsewhere in the limb; for example, the hip flexion device affected muscles that span the ankle joint. Our results may help experimentalists decide which joint motions to target when building devices and can provide intuition for how devices may interact with the musculoskeletal system. The simulations are freely available online, allowing others to reproduce and extend our work.
Project description:Many cursorial and large hopping species are extremely efficient locomotors with various morphological adaptations believed to reduce mechanical demand and improve movement efficiency, including elongated distal limb segments. However, despite having elongated limbs, small hoppers such as desert kangaroo rats (Dipodomys deserti) are less efficient locomotors than their larger counterparts, which may be in part due to avoiding predators through explosive jumping movements. Despite potentially conflicting mechanical demands between the two movements, kangaroo rats are both excellent jumpers and attain high hopping speeds, likely due to a specialized hindlimb musculoskeletal morphology. This study combined experimental dissection data with a static analysis of muscle moment generating capacities using a newly developed musculoskeletal model to characterize kangaroo rat hindlimb musculoskeletal architecture and investigate how morphology has evolved to meet hopping and jumping mechanical demands. Hindlimb morphology appears biased towards generating constant moment arms over large joint ranges of motion in this species, which may balance competing requirements by reducing the need for posture and movement specific excitation patterns. The ankle extensors are a major exception to the strong positive relationship exhibited by most muscles between muscle architecture parameters (e.g. Lfibre) and joint moment arms. These muscles appear suited to meeting the high moments required for jumping: the biarticular nature of the ankle extensors is leveraged to reduce MTU strain and create a four-bar linkage that facilitates proximal force transfer. The kangaroo rat hindlimb provides an interesting case study for understanding how morphology balances the sometimes competing demands of hopping and jumping.
Project description:Many of the major locomotor transitions during the evolution of Archosauria, the lineage including crocodiles and birds as well as extinct Dinosauria, were shifts from quadrupedalism to bipedalism (and vice versa). Those occurred within a continuum between more sprawling and erect modes of locomotion and involved drastic changes of limb anatomy and function in several lineages, including sauropodomorph dinosaurs. We present biomechanical computer models of two locomotor extremes within Archosauria in an analysis of joint ranges of motion and the moment arms of the major forelimb muscles in order to quantify biomechanical differences between more sprawling, pseudosuchian (represented the crocodile Crocodylus johnstoni) and more erect, dinosaurian (represented by the sauropodomorph Mussaurus patagonicus) modes of forelimb function. We compare these two locomotor extremes in terms of the reconstructed musculoskeletal anatomy, ranges of motion of the forelimb joints and the moment arm patterns of muscles across those ranges of joint motion. We reconstructed the three-dimensional paths of 30 muscles acting around the shoulder, elbow and wrist joints. We explicitly evaluate how forelimb joint mobility and muscle actions may have changed with postural and anatomical alterations from basal archosaurs to early sauropodomorphs. We thus evaluate in which ways forelimb posture was correlated with muscle leverage, and how such differences fit into a broader evolutionary context (i.e. transition from sprawling quadrupedalism to erect bipedalism and then shifting to graviportal quadrupedalism). Our analysis reveals major differences of muscle actions between the more sprawling and erect models at the shoulder joint. These differences are related not only to the articular surfaces but also to the orientation of the scapula, in which extension/flexion movements in Crocodylus (e.g. protraction of the humerus) correspond to elevation/depression in Mussaurus. Muscle action is highly influenced by limb posture, more so than morphology. Habitual quadrupedalism in Mussaurus is not supported by our analysis of joint range of motion, which indicates that glenohumeral protraction was severely restricted. Additionally, some active pronation of the manus may have been possible in Mussaurus, allowing semi-pronation by a rearranging of the whole antebrachium (not the radius against the ulna, as previously thought) via long-axis rotation at the elbow joint. However, the muscles acting around this joint to actively pronate it may have been too weak to drive or maintain such orientations as opposed to a neutral position in between pronation and supination. Regardless, the origin of quadrupedalism in Sauropoda is not only linked to manus pronation but also to multiple shifts of forelimb morphology, allowing greater flexion movements of the glenohumeral joint and a more columnar forelimb posture.
Project description:Flatfoot is linked to secondary lower limb joint problems, such as patellofemoral pain. This study aimed to investigate the influence of medial posting insoles on the joint mechanics of the lower extremity in adults with flatfoot. Gait analysis was performed on fifteen young adults with flatfoot under two conditions: walking with shoes and foot orthoses (WSFO), and walking with shoes (WS) in random order. The data collected by a vicon system were used to drive the musculoskeletal model to estimate the hip, patellofemoral, ankle, medial and lateral tibiofemoral joint contact forces. The joint contact forces in WSFO and WS conditions were compared. Compared to the WS group, the second peak patellofemoral contact force (p < 0.05) and the peak ankle contact force (p < 0.05) were significantly lower in the WSFO group by 10.2% and 6.8%, respectively. The foot orthosis significantly reduced the peak ankle eversion angle (p < 0.05) and ankle eversion moment (p < 0.05); however, the peak knee adduction moment increased (p < 0.05). The reduction in the patellofemoral joint force and ankle contact force could potentially inhibit flatfoot-induced lower limb joint problems, despite a greater knee adduction moment.
Project description:The ancestral condition from which humans evolved is critical for understanding the adaptive origin of bipedal locomotion. The 4.4 million-year-old hominin partial skeleton attributed to Ardipithecus ramidus preserves a foot that purportedly shares morphometric affinities with monkeys, but this interpretation remains controversial. Here I show that the foot of Ar. ramidus is most similar to living chimpanzee and gorilla species among a large sample of anthropoid primates. The foot morphology of Ar. ramidus suggests that the evolutionary precursor of hominin bipedalism was African ape-like terrestrial quadrupedalism and climbing. The elongation of the midfoot and phalangeal reduction in Ar. ramidus relative to the African apes is consistent with hypotheses of increased propulsive capabilities associated with an early form of bipedalism. This study provides evidence that the modern human foot was derived from an ancestral form adapted to terrestrial plantigrade quadrupedalism.
Project description:We present a robust and computationally inexpensive method to estimate the lengths and three-dimensional moment arms for a large number of musculotendon actuators of the human lower limb. Using a musculoskeletal model of the lower extremity, a set of values was established for the length of each musculotendon actuator for different lower limb generalized coordinates (joint angles). A multidimensional spline function was then used to fit these data. Muscle moment arms were obtained by differentiating the musculotendon length spline function with respect to the generalized coordinate of interest. This new method was then compared to a previously used polynomial regression method. Compared to the polynomial regression method, the multidimensional spline method produced lower errors for estimating musculotendon lengths and moment arms throughout the whole generalized coordinate workspace. The fitting accuracy was also less affected by the number of dependent degrees of freedom and by the amount of experimental data available. The spline method only required information on musculotendon lengths to estimate both musculotendon lengths and moment arms, thus relaxing data input requirements, whereas the polynomial regression requires different equations to be used for both musculotendon lengths and moment arms. Finally, we used the spline method in conjunction with an electromyography driven musculoskeletal model to estimate muscle forces under different contractile conditions, which showed that the method is suitable for the integration into large scale neuromusculoskeletal models.
Project description:Subject-specific musculoskeletal models require accurate values of muscle moment arms. The aim of this study was to compare moment arms of wrist tendons obtained from non-invasive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to those obtained from an in vitro experimental approach. MRI was performed on ten upper limb cadaveric specimens to obtain the centrelines for the flexor carpi radialis (FCR), flexor carpi ulnaris (FCU), extensor carpi radialis longus (ECRL), extensor carpi radialis brevis (ECRB), extensor carpi ulnaris (ECU), and abductor pollicis longus (APL) tendons. From these, the anatomical moment arms about each of the flexion-extension (FE) and radioulnar deviation (RUD) axes of the wrist were calculated. Specimens were mounted on a physiologic wrist simulator to obtain functional measurements of the moment arms using the tendon excursion method. No differences were observed between anatomical and functional values of the FE and RUD moment arms of FCR, ECRL and ECRB, and the RUD moment arm of ECU (p?>?.075). Scaling the anatomical moment arms relative to ECRB in FE and ECU in RUD reduced differences in the FE moment arm of FCU and the RUD moment arm of APL to less than 15% (p?>?.139). However, differences persisted in moment arms of FCU in RUD, and ECU and APL in FE (p?<?.008). This study shows that while measurements of moment arms of wrist tendons using imaging do not always conform to values obtained using in vitro experimental approaches, a stricter protocol could result in the acquisition of subject-specific moment arms to personalise musculoskeletal models.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Ankle exoskeletons offer a promising opportunity to offset mechanical deficits after stroke by applying the needed torque at the paretic ankle. Because joint torque is related to gait speed, it is important to consider the user's gait speed when determining the magnitude of assistive joint torque. We developed and tested a novel exoskeleton controller for delivering propulsive assistance which modulates exoskeleton torque magnitude based on both soleus muscle activity and walking speed. The purpose of this research is to assess the impact of the resulting exoskeleton assistance on post-stroke walking performance across a range of walking speeds. METHODS:Six participants with stroke walked with and without assistance applied to a powered ankle exoskeleton on the paretic limb. Walking speed started at 60% of their comfortable overground speed and was increased each minute (n00, n01, n02, etc.). We measured lower limb joint and limb powers, metabolic cost of transport, paretic and non-paretic limb propulsion, and trailing limb angle. RESULTS:Exoskeleton assistance increased with walking speed, verifying the speed-adaptive nature of the controller. Both paretic ankle joint power and total limb power increased significantly with exoskeleton assistance at six walking speeds (n00, n01, n02, n03, n04, n05). Despite these joint- and limb-level benefits associated with exoskeleton assistance, no subject averaged metabolic benefits were evident when compared to the unassisted condition. Both paretic trailing limb angle and integrated anterior paretic ground reaction forces were reduced with assistance applied as compared to no assistance at four speeds (n00, n01, n02, n03). CONCLUSIONS:Our results suggest that despite appropriate scaling of ankle assistance by the exoskeleton controller, suboptimal limb posture limited the conversion of exoskeleton assistance into forward propulsion. Future studies could include biofeedback or verbal cues to guide users into limb configurations that encourage the conversion of mechanical power at the ankle to forward propulsion. TRIAL REGISTRATION:N/A.
Project description:The triceps surae primarily acts as plantarflexor of the ankle joint. However, the group also causes inversion and eversion at the subtalar joint. Despite this, the Achilles tendon moment arm is generally measured without considering the potential influence of inversion/eversion of the foot during plantarflexion. This study investigated the effect of foot inversion and eversion on the plantarflexion Achilles tendon moment arm. Achilles tendon moment arms were determined using the centre-of-rotation method in magnetic resonance images of the left ankle of 11 participants. The foot was positioned at 15° dorsiflexion, 0° or 15° plantarflexion using a Styrofoam wedge. In each of these positions, the foot was either 10° inverted, neutral or 10° everted using an additional Styrofoam wedge. Achilles tendon moment arm in neutral foot position was 47.93?±?4.54?mm and did not differ significantly when the foot was positioned in 10° inversion and 10° eversion. Hence, inversion/eversion position of the foot may not considerably affect the length of the Achilles tendon moment arm. This information could be useful in musculoskeletal models of the human lower leg and foot and when estimating Achilles tendon forces during plantarflexion with the foot positioned in inversion or eversion.
Project description:Technologies that augment human performance are the focus of intensive research and development, driven by advances in wearable robotic systems. Success has been limited by the challenge of understanding human-robot interaction. To address this challenge, we developed an optimization framework to synthesize a realistic human standing long jump and used the framework to explore how simulated wearable robotic devices might enhance jump performance.A planar, five-segment, seven-degree-of-freedom model with physiological torque actuators, which have variable torque capacity depending on joint position and velocity, was used to represent human musculoskeletal dynamics. An active augmentation device was modeled as a torque actuator that could apply a single pulse of up to 100 Nm of extension torque. A passive design was modeled as rotational springs about each lower limb joint. Dynamic optimization searched for physiological and device actuation patterns to maximize jump distance.Optimization of the nominal case yielded a 2.27 m jump that captured salient kinematic and kinetic features of human jumps. When the active device was added to the ankle, knee, or hip, jump distance increased to between 2.49 and 2.52 m. Active augmentation of all three joints increased the jump distance to 3.10 m. The passive design increased jump distance to 3.32 m by adding torques of 135, 365, and 297 Nm to the ankle, knee, and hip, respectively.Dynamic optimization can be used to simulate a standing long jump and investigate human-robot interaction.Simulation can aid in the design of performance-enhancing technologies.