Endothelin-1 induces chondrocyte senescence and cartilage damage via endothelin receptor type B in a post-traumatic osteoarthritis mouse model

M. Au, Z. Liu, L. Rong, Y. Zheng, C. Wen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: This study aimed to investigate the role of endothelin-1 (ET-1), originally known as the potent vasoconstrictor, and its receptors in chondrocyte senescence and osteoarthritis (OA) development. Method: Temporal changes of ET-1 and its receptors with OA development were characterized in a posttraumatic OA (PTOA) mouse model at time zero, 1-month and 4-month after surgical induction via destabilization of medial meniscus (DMM). A transgenic ET-1 overexpression (TET-1) mouse model was deployed to assess the impact of upregulated ET-1 on chondrocyte senescence and cartilage degradation. Effects of endothelin receptor blockade on chondrocyte senescence and OA development were further examined both in vitro and in vivo. Results: Local expression of ET-1 in subchondral bone and synovium upregulated after DMM with an increase of plasma ET-1 level from 3.18 ± 0.21 pg/ml at time zero to 6.47 ± 0.34 pg/ml at 4-month post-surgery. Meanwhile, endothelin type B receptor (ETBR) (53.31 ± 2.42% to 83.8 ± 2.65%) and p16INK4a (10.91 ± 1.07% to 28.2 ± 1.0%) positve chondrocytes accumulated in articular cartilage since 1-month prior to cartilage loss at 4-month post-surgery. Overexpressed ET-1 promoted p16INK4a-positive senescent chondrocytes accumulation and cartilage degradation in TET-1 mice. Selective blockade of ETBR, but not ETAR, lowered the expression of p16INK4a in ET-1 or H2O2-induced chondrocyte senescence model, and mitigated the severity of murine PTOA. Intriguingly, reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger, Vitamin C, could rescue ET-1-induced chondrocyte senescence in vitro associated with restoration of mitochondrial dynamics. Conclusion: ET-1 could induce chondrocytes senescence and cartilage damages via ETBR in PTOA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1559-1571
Number of pages13
JournalOsteoarthritis and Cartilage
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Endothelin type B receptor
  • Endothelin-1
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Senescence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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