Indexed on: 03 Jun '10Published on: 03 Jun '10Published in: Arthritis and rheumatism
To investigate whether the reduction of discoidin domain receptor 2 (DDR-2), a cell membrane tyrosine kinase receptor for native type II collagen, attenuates the progression of articular cartilage degeneration in mouse models of osteoarthritis (OA).Double-heterozygous (type XI collagen-deficient [Col11a1(+/-)] and Ddr2-deficient [Ddr2(+/-)]) mutant mice were generated. Knee joints of Ddr2(+/-) mice were subjected to microsurgical destabilization of the medial meniscus. Conditions of the articular cartilage from the knee joints of the double-heterozygous mutant and surgically treated mice were examined by histology, evaluated using a modified Mankin scoring system, and characterized by immunohistochemistry.The rate of progressive degeneration in knee joints was dramatically reduced in the double-heterozygous mutant mice compared with that in the type XI collagen-deficient mice. The progression in the double-heterozygous mutant mice was delayed by ∼6 months. Following surgical destabilization of the medial meniscus, the progressive degeneration toward OA was dramatically delayed in the Ddr2(+/-) mice compared with that in their wild-type littermates. The articular cartilage damage present in the knee joints of the mice was directly correlated with the expression profiles of DDR-2 and matrix metalloproteinase 13.Reduction of DDR-2 expression attenuates the articular cartilage degeneration of knee joints induced either by type XI collagen deficiency or by surgical destabilization of the medial meniscus.