bones and cartilages

Differentiate between bone and cartilage

Bones and cartilages both are two special type of connective tissues which protect our internal body organs and provides structural support to our organs.

There are following Difference between Bones and Cartilages.


  • A bone is known as a connecting tissue where the living cells tissues and the various other components are enclosed with the non-living material of intercellular .
  • The 2 important constituents of bones are calcium phosphate and collagen that difference it from other similar structures examples as the chitin and enamel.
  • These structures are in various different sizes and Shapes with different forms of complexities which fits for the different functions.
  • Bone tissue are the main tissues which make up the human Skelton and other skeletons of vertebrates.
  • The Bone tissues in the hard structure form a dense honey comb like matrix internally composed of two different functions.
  • Osteoblast help in making new cells to create the protective the outer most surface of the bones, whereas to mineralizes the cells and to transport minerals into the blood is done by the osteoclast .
  • Bones are the mineralized tissues which are consisting of various types of tissues into them like the blood vessels,bone marrow, endosteum.
  • Based on the composition and the arrangement of the tissues, bones are formed of two different tissues, cancellous bone and cortical bone.


Bones and cartilages are different as Cartilage is a, flexible and strong tissue like fiber that forms rubber type padding at the ends of the longest bones and that help in the easy movement of the bones.

  • Cartilages are the part of connecting tissue that also form a structural body of various organs in human body like nose etc.
  • Cartilages are not as dense ,hard and rigid as bones because of more collagenous tissue in the matrix the extracellular matrix is composed of the proteoglycans ,collagen fibers, elastin’s.
  • Chondrocytes are the specialized cells in cartilage which divided to give a rise to the new cells.
  • The nutrition and theoxygen are provided to chondrocytes via diffusion by the Cartilages lack blood vessels or the nervous supply .
  • As the diffusion and the growth of the chondrocytes take place at slow rate, which why they don’t increase in the mass and size very much.
  • Based on the number of the different parts in the cartilage,cartilages are of 3 types elastic cartilage hyaline cartilage, and fibrocartilage

Function of Bones and Cartilages

Bones and cartilages both protect body organs and give them support. Cartilages are not stiff as bones but they plays an important role to protect internal body organs.

15 major differences between Bones and Cartilage With examples

Key differences between bones and cartilages are as follows.

Basis for comparison




A bone is connective tissue where there is living cells, tissues and other components are enclosed within the hard non-living inter-cellular material.

Cartilage is a flexible, and strong fibrous tissue that forms rubber like padding at the ends of long bones that help in the ends of long bones that help in the movement of bones.


Bones are rigid non-flexible and robust.

Cartilages are flexible, soft and elastic.


There are five types of bones:

  1. Long bones
  2. Flat bones
  3. Short bones
  4. Irregular bones
  5. Sesamoid bones
There are three types of cartilages:
  1. Fibro cartilage
  2. Elastic cartilage
  3. Hyaline cartilage
Blood Supply

Direction of growth

Bones have rich blood supply with deposition of calcium salts

The growth of bones is bidirectional i.e. grows in both directions.

Cartilage lacks blood supply except in some cartilage with no deposition of calcium salts

The growth of cartilage is unidirectional i.e. grows on only one side

Bone marrow

Bone marrow is present

Bone marrow is a kind of tissue from which all blood cells made

Bone marrow is absent


Both the Haversian canal system and Volkmann canal are present in bones

Cartilage lacks the Haversian canal system


Bone cells are known as osteocytes

Cartilage cells are known as chondrocytes


Bones are hard as result of the deposition of phosphates and carbonates calcium in the matrix

Cartilage is soft except for calcified cartilage


The matrix which forms the bones consist of a protein called ossein and can be both organic and inorganic

The matrix which forms cartilage consists of a protein called chondrin and is organic


Lacunae of bones have canaliculi where each lacunae has only one cell

Lacunae of cartilage do not have canaliculi and each lacunae has 2-3 cells


Bones replaces cartilage in fetal and childhood period

Cartilage is mostly prevalence in embryo stage where skeletons are initially built up of cartilages


The tissues first appear in the 6th to 8th   week of embryo, and ossification of cartilage takes place

Cartilage stops growing in late teens as chondrocytes stop dividing and regenerate poorly in adults


Bone provides a framework shape to the body and protects from mechanical damage

Bone is responsible for R.B.C and W.B.C production

They maintain the shape and flexibility of fleshy appendages and reduces friction at joints cartilage also acts as shock absorbers between weight bearing bones

Types of Bones and Cartilages

The following are the types of bones and cartilages.

Type of bones

The example of bones are humerus and skull.

Type of cartilage

The example of cartilage is auricular cartilage of ear, coastal cartilage.


Here in the above article, we have discussed about major difference between bones and cartilage hope you will find this helpful for your study.

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Hey Myself Sanjeev full time civil engineer with a hobby of blogging in free time. I had developed this website to share some ideas, and knowledge to help the peoples.