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Effects of mesenchymal stem cells on interleukin-1β-treated chondrocytes and cartilage in a rat osteoarthritic model

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In the present study, the effects and mechanisms of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) on interleukin (IL)-1βstimulated rat chondrocytes, as well as cartilage from a rat model of osteoarthritis (OA) induced by anterior cruciate ligament transection and medial meniscectomy were investigated. Confluent rat chondrocytes were treated with IL-1β (10 ng/ml), then cultured indirectly with or without MSCs at a ratio of 2:1. Total RNA and protein were collected at various time-points, and western blot and reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses were used to investigate the expression of type II collagen (Col2), aggrecan, matrix metalloproteinase-13 (MMP13) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). The activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2), c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) p65 and inhibitory-κ-B-α (IκBα) were also assessed by western blotting. In addition, the in vivo effects of MSCs in a rat OA model were assessed by histology and western blot analysis. The results indicated that in vitro, IL-1β markedly upregulated the expression of MMP-13, COX-2, phosphorylated ERK1/2, JNK, p38 MAPK and NF-κB p65, and inhibited the expression of Col2, aggrecan and IκBα. Conversely, MSCs enhanced the expression of Col2, aggrecan and IκBα, and inhibited the expression of MMP-13 and NF-κB p65 in IL-1βstimulated rat chondrocytes. In vivo histological and western blot analyses revealed analogous results to the in vitro findings. The results of the present study demonstrated that MSCs suppressed the inflammatory response and extracellular matrix degradation in IL-1βinduced rat chondrocytes, as well as cartilage in a osteoarthritic rat model, in part via the NF-κB signaling pathway.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Orthopedics, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210029, P.R. China

Publication date: August 1, 2015

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  • Molecular Medicine Reports is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal available in print and online, that includes studies devoted to molecular medicine, underscoring aspects including pharmacology, pathology, genetics, neurosciences, infectious diseases, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. In vitro and in vivo studies of experimental model systems pertaining to the mechanisms of a variety of diseases offer researchers the necessary tools and knowledge with which to aid the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.
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