Osteoarthritis (OA) results in the destruction and breakdown of articular cartilage matrix. Breakdown of the cartilage proteoglycan component results in the generation of constituent fragments that can be detected in the blood, synovial fluid or urine. Non-collagenous, non-proteoglycan components of cartilage can also be detected following their release as a result of turnover and disease. OA also alters the circulating profile of metabolites in the body. Metabolomic strategies have been used to distinguish populations with OA from normal populations by the creation of a metabolomic 'fingerprint' attributable to the disease. This paper is the second part of a two-part review and describes some of the techniques used to measure the concentrations of some of these 'non-collagenous' biomarkers, and how the application of these measurements assists the study of joint disease. Collagen-based biomarkers were discussed in part one.
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