Relating to muscles and to the skeleton, as, for example, the musculoskeletal system.
The musculoskeletal system is comprised of the skeleton, which provides mechanical support and determines shape; the muscles, which power movement; and connective tissues such as tendon and ligament, which hold the other components together. The cartilage surfaces of joints and the intervertebral discs of the spine allow for movement and flexibility. The Division of Musculoskeletal Diseases of the NIAMS supports research aimed at improving the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system and its component tissues. Key public health problems addressed by this research include osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and muscular dystrophy. Research is conducted at every level, from fundamental biology to clinical intervention.