Background: Osteoarthritis (OA) is a destructive joint disease and there are no known biomarkers available for an early diagnosis. To identify potential disease biomarkers and gain further insight into the disease mechanisms of OA we applied quantitative proteomics with SILAC technology on the secretomes from chondrocytes of OA knees, designated as high Mankin (HM) scored secretome. A quantitative comparison was made between the secretomes of the medial and lateral femur condyle chondrocytes in the same knee since the medial femur condyle is usually more affected in OA than the lateral condyle, which was confirmed by Mankin scoring. The medial/lateral comparison was also made on the secretomes from chondrocytes taken from one individual with no clinically apparent joint-disease, designated as low Mankin (LM) scored secretome.
Results: We identified 825 proteins in the HM secretome and 69 of these showed differential expression when comparing the medial and lateral femoral compartment. The LM scored femoral condyle showed early signs of OA in the medial compartment as assessed by Mankin score. We here report the identification and relative quantification of several proteins of interest for the OA disease mechanism e.g. CYTL1, DMD and STAB1 together with putative early disease markers e.g. TIMP1, PPP2CA and B2M.
Conclusions: The present study reveals differences in protein abundance between medial/lateral femur condyles in OA patients. These regulatory differences expand the knowledge regarding OA disease markers and mechanisms.