Recent advances in TGF-beta effects on chondrocyte metabolism. Potential therapeutic roles of TGF-beta in cartilage disorders

Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 2002 Jun;13(3):241-57. doi: 10.1016/s1359-6101(02)00004-7.


Novel approaches to treat osteoarthritis are required and progress in understanding the biology of cartilage disorders has led to the use of genes whose products stimulate cartilage repair or inhibit breakdown of the cartilaginous matrix. Among them, transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) plays a significant role in promoting chondrocyte anabolism in vitro (enhancing matrix production, cell proliferation, osteochondrogenic differentiation) and in vivo (short-term intra-articular injections lead to increased bone formation and subsequent cartilage formation, beneficial effects on osteochondrogenesis). In vivo induction of the expression of TGF-beta and the use of gene transfer may provide a new approach for treatment of osteoarthritic lesions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cartilage Diseases / metabolism*
  • Cartilage Diseases / therapy*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Division
  • Chondrocytes / drug effects*
  • Chondrocytes / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System
  • Models, Biological
  • Protein Isoforms
  • Signal Transduction
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / pharmacology*
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / therapeutic use


  • Protein Isoforms
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta