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Friday, March 2, 2001

Neutraceuticals can provide some condroprotection

A study of the effects of glucosamine sulfate, chondroitin sulfate, and manganese-ascorbate (nutraceuticals) on chondrocyte metabolism in vitro found nutraceuticals in combination increase the amount of aggrecan synthesis (matrix production) and provide some degree of chondroprotection in vitro.

Researchers said Thursday in the study in scientific paper 157 that "PCR data suggest that these agents also increase the expression of the genes for agggrecan and collagen II. These nutraceuticals may serve as signaling molecules for the upregulation of these genes, instead of merely serving as substrates for chondrocyte metabolism."

To conduct the study, articular cartilage explants were harvested from mature bovine ankles. Explants were cultured in media alone (control), in each nutraceutical at different concentrations, and in a nutraceutical combination at different concentrations. Explants were harvested at predetermined time points.

Three experiments were done using this explant technique. In the first experiment, the amount of aggrecan synthesis was determined by scintillation counts per mg of dry weight cartilage after labeling with S-35. In the second experiment, the S35-labeled explants were incubated in Interleukin-1 (IL-1) after preconditioning with the neutraceuticals. Aliquots of media were then scintillation counted at specified time points. In the third experiment, PCR analysis was used to assess the expression of genes coding for collagen I, collagen II, and aggrecan.

Explants treated with the nutraceutical combination showed: greater production of aggrecan compared to controls, the least amount of chondrocyte degradation in the IL-1 model, and increased gene expression for both aggrecan and collagen II with PCR analysis.

The researchers are Christopher P. O'Grady, MD; Scott E. Marwin, MD; and Daniel A. Grande, PhD, all of Long Island Jewish Medical Center, N.Y.

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Last modified 15/February/2001 by IS