Diosgenin inhibits IL-1β-induced expression of inflammatory mediators in human osteoarthritis chondrocytes

Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2015 May 1;8(5):4830-6. eCollection 2015.


It is well known that the inflammatory cytokines play important roles in osteoarthritis (OA). Diosgenin is a steroidal saponin found in several plants including Solanum and Dioscorea species and possesses diverse biological activities including anti-inflammatory properties. However, the role of diosgenin in inflammatory responses in OA chondrocytes is still unclear. Therefore, in this study, we investigated the anti-inflammatory properties of diosgenin in human OA chondrocytes. We found that diosgenin inhibited the production of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) induced by interleukin-1-beta (IL-1β). Diosgenin significantly inhibited the IL-1β-stimulated expression of metalloproteinase-3 (MMP-3), MMP-13, inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in human OA chondrocytes. In addition, diosgenin suppressed the degradation of IκB-α in IL-1β-induced human OA chondrocytes. Taken together, this study showed that diosgenin can effectively inhibit the IL-1β-induced expression of inflammatory mediators, suggesting that diosgenin may be a potential agent in the treatment of OA.

Keywords: Diosgenin; chondrocytes; inflammation.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Chondrocytes / drug effects*
  • Chondrocytes / metabolism
  • Dinoprostone / metabolism
  • Diosgenin / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism*
  • Interleukin-1beta / pharmacology*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 13 / metabolism
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II / metabolism
  • Osteoarthritis / metabolism*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 13
  • Diosgenin
  • Dinoprostone