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Upregulation of antigen presentation function and inflammation in chondrocytes by induction of proteoglycan aggrecan peptides (P16-31 and P263-280)


1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

 

  1. Medical Microbiology Interdisciplinary Program, Graduate School, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
  2. Immunology Division, Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
  3. Department of Orthopaedics, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
  4. Department of Orthopaedics, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
  5. Department of Orthopaedics, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
  6. Immunology Division, Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, and Skeletal Disorders Research Unit, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand. rangsima.r@chula.ac.th, rangsima.reantragoon@gmail.com

CER14289
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PMID: 34128792 [PubMed]

Received: 03/12/2020
Accepted : 26/03/2021
In Press: 08/06/2021

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:
A central hallmark of osteoarthritis (OA) is cartilage destruction. Chondrocytes not only control cartilage metabolism, but are capable of immunogenic responses. The role of chondrocytes in the pathogenesis of OA is still unclear. In this study, we aimed to determine the immunological role of chondrocytes in response to proteoglycan aggrecan (PG) peptides.
METHODS:
Human chondrocytes were isolated from cartilage of knee OA patients undergoing knee arthroplasty and stimulated with proteoglycan aggrecan peptides in the presence of IFNγ. Antigen presentation markers, co-stimulatory molecules, cytokine production, gene expression and antigen presentation to T cells were evaluated.
RESULTS:
Our results show that IFNγ was required for the expression of MHC class I and II. However, stimulation with PG peptides P16-31 and P263-280, but not P2379-2394, increased expression level of co-stimulatory molecules (CD80 and CD86) and IL-6, IL-8 and TNFα production. This upregulation was seen in chondrocytes to nearly comparable levels of professional antigen-presenting cells. A similar pattern of gene expression was observed between P16-31 and P263-280 peptide stimulation on chondrocytes and this was different from P2379-2394 peptide treatment. Co-culture with autologous T cells revealed signi cant proliferation of cells when stimulating with the P263-280 peptides.
CONCLUSIONS:
Our study shows that human chondrocytes display unique features of antigen presentation. Their ability to process certain proteoglycan aggrecan peptides, in which these molecules are synthesised by the cartilage themselves render the possibility of a role for “self-antigens” in the immunopathogenesis of OA.

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