The aim of this study was to determine the effects of bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) on articular chondrocyte tissues grown as monolayers in vitro for up to 8 weeks. Articular chondrocytes were isolated from New Zealand White rabbits and plated in monolayer cultures. The cultures were supplemented with 100 ng/mL of BMP-2 for up to 8 weeks and the extracellular matrix (ECM) composition, material properties, and messenger RNA (mRNA) expression were analyzed. mRNA expression of cartilage-specific genes, type II collagen, and aggrecan showed that BMP-2 enhanced chondrocyte stability for up to 3 weeks. After 3 weeks in culture, there was substantially more type I collagen expression and more osteopontin and runt-related transcription factor 2 expression in 5- and 8-week cultures treated with BMP-2 than in controls. Additionally, matrix metalloproteinase-13 and ADAMTS-5 (A disintegrin-like and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin 5) were upregulated in 5- and 8-week cultures treated with BMP-2, coinciding with a loss of ECM density, collagen, and proteoglycan. Eight-week tissue stimulated with BMP-2 was more fragile and tore more easily when removed from the culture dish as compared to controls, suggesting temporal limitations to the effectiveness of BMP-2 in monolayer systems and perhaps other models to enhance the generation of a cartilage-like tissue for tissue engineering purposes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering