Abstract: Bone infections are difficult to diagnose and treat, especially when a prosthetic joint replacement or implant is involved. Bone loss is a major complication of osteomyelitis, but the mechanism behind has mainly been investigated in cell cul- tures and has not been confirmed in human settings. Inflammation is important in initiating an appropriate immune response to invading pathogens. However, many of the signaling molecules used by the immune system can also modu- late bone remodeling and contribute to bone resorption during osteomyelitis. Our current knowledge of the inflamma- tory response relies heavily on animal models as research based on human samples is scarce. Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most common causes of bone infections and is the pathogen of choice in animal models. The regulation of inflammatory genes during prosthetic joint infections and implant-associated osteomyelitis has only been studied in rodent models. It is important to consider the validity of an animal model when results are extrapolated to humans, and both bone composition and the immune system of pigs has been shown to be more similar to humans, than to rodents. Here in vivo studies on the inflammatory response to prosthetic joint infections and implant-associated osteomyelitis are reviewed.
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