Urolithin a attenuates IL-1β-induced inflammatory responses and cartilage degradation via inhibiting the MAPK/NF-κB signaling pathways in rat articular chondrocytes.
J Inflamm (Lond). 2020 ;17:13. Epub 2020 Mar 24. PMID: 32210738
Background: Osteoarthritis (OA) is characterized by inflammation and extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation and is one of the most common chronic degenerative joint diseases that causes pain and disability in adults. Urolithin A (UA) has been widely reported for its anti-inflammatory properties in several chronic diseases. However, the effects of UA on OA remain unclear. The aim of the current study was to investigate the anti-inflammatory effects and mechanism of UA in interleukin-1β (IL-1β)-induced chondrocytes.
Results: No marked UA cytotoxicity was noted, and UA protected cartilage from damage following IL-1β stimulation in micromasses. Moreover, UA promoted the expression of anabolic factors including Sox-9, Collagen II, and Aggrecan while inhibiting the expression of catabolic factors such as matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs 4 (ADAMTS-4) in rat chondrocytes. Protective effects of UA were also observed in ex vivo organ culture of articular cartilage. Mechanistically, IL-1β significantly activated and upregulated the expression of p-ERK 1/2, p-JNK, p-P38, and p-P65, while UA protected chondrocytes against IL-1β-induced injury by activating the mitogen-activated kinase (MAPK)/nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) signaling pathways.
Conclusion: Our results provide the evidence that UA could attenuate IL-1β-induced cell injury in chondrocytes via its anti-inflammatory action. UA may be a promising therapeutic agent in the treatment of OA.