Increased expression of lipocalin-type prostaglandin D2 synthase in osteoarthritic cartilage
Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is an important catabolic cytokine in rheumatoid and osteoarthritic joint disease. Besides inducing a catabolic response in articular chondrocytes it also strongly induces synergistic mediators such as leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and interleukin-6 (IL-6). The molecular basis of this is so far hardly understood. The aim of our study was to evaluate in vitro and in vivo whether IL-6 and LIF are differentially expressed in normal human and osteoarthritic adult articular chondrocytes and to investigate the potential intracellular signaling pathways of IL-1 involved in these gene regulation events. IL-6 and LIF mRNA expressions were found only at low levels in normal adult articular cartilage. Neither IL-6 nor LIF was strongly over-expressed in osteoarthritic cartilage degeneration. Clearly, both IL-6 and LIF can be very efficiently induced by IL-1beta in articular chondrocytes in vitro. However, this induction was somewhat less in osteoarthritic cells, which were overall activated in terms of expression of both cytokines without stimulation. Experiments using pathway selective inhibitors showed that intracellular signaling of IL-1beta for IL-6 and LIF is mediated by a mixture of the IL-1 signaling cascades. However, the ERK-pathway appeared to be particularly important and might be, therefore, of particular potential if one intends to block induction of these molecules by IL-1 in arthritic joint disease.