Mechanical loading of articular cartilage reduces IL-1-induced enzyme expression

P. A. Torzilli, M. Bhargava, C. T. Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Objective: Exposure of articular cartilage to interleukin-1 (IL-1) results in increased synthesis of matrix degrading enzymes. Previously mechanical load applied together with IL-1 stimulation was found to reduce aggrecan cleavage by ADAMTS-4 and 5 and MMP-1, -3, -9, and -13 and reduce proteoglycan loss from the extracellular matrix. To further delineate the inhibition mechanism the gene expression of ADAMTS-4 and 5; MMP-1, -3, -9, and -13; and TIMP-1, -2, and -3 were measured. Design: Mature bovine articular cartilage was stimulated with a 0.5 MPa compressive stress and 10 ng/ml of IL-1α for 3 days and then allowed to recover without stimulation for 1 additional day. The media was assayed for proteoglycan content on a daily basis, while chondrocyte gene expression (mRNA) was measured during stimulation and 1 day of recovery. Results: Mechanical load alone did not change the gene expression for ADAMTS, MMP, or TIMP. IL-1 caused an increase in gene expression for all enzymes after 1 day of stimulation while not affecting the TIMP levels. Load applied together with IL-1 decreased the expression levels of ADAMTS-4 and -5 and MMP-1 and -3 and increased TIMP-3 expression. Conclusions: A mechanical load appears to modify cartilage degradation by IL-1 at the cellular level by reducing mRNA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)364-373
Number of pages10
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2011


  • Articular cartilage < Tissue
  • Chondrocytes < Cells
  • Degradative enzymes < Cytokines and growth factors
  • Interleukins < Cytokines and growth factors
  • Mechanobiology < Diagnostics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


Dive into the research topics of 'Mechanical loading of articular cartilage reduces IL-1-induced enzyme expression'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this