Hyperlipidemic microenvironment conditionates damage mechanisms in human chondrocytes by oxidative stress

Lipids Health Dis. 2017 Jun 12;16(1):114. doi: 10.1186/s12944-017-0510-x.


Background: Currently, two pathogenic pathways describe the role of obesity in osteoarthritis (OA); one through biomechanical stress, and the other by the contribution of systemic inflammation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of free fatty acids (FFA) in human chondrocytes (HC) expression of proinflammatory factors and reactive oxygen species (ROS).

Methods: HC were exposed to two different concentrations of FFA in order to evaluate the secretion of adipokines through cytokines immunoassays panel, quantify the protein secretion of FFA-treated chondrocytes, and fluorescent cytometry assays were performed to evaluate the reactive oxygen species (ROS) production.

Results: HC injury was observed at 48 h of treatment with FFA. In the FFA-treated HC the production of reactive oxygen species such as superoxide radical, hydrogen peroxide, and the reactive nitrogen species increased significantly in a at the two-dose tested (250 and 500 μM). In addition, we found an increase in the cytokine secretion of IL-6 and chemokine IL-8 in FFA-treated HC in comparison to the untreated HC.

Conclusion: In our in vitro model of HC, a hyperlipidemia microenvironment induces an oxidative stress state that enhances the inflammatory process mediated by adipokines secretion in HC.

Keywords: Chondrocytes; Free fatty acids; Inflammation; Oxidative stress.

MeSH terms

  • Adipokines / genetics
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chondrocytes / drug effects
  • Chondrocytes / metabolism
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen Peroxide / metabolism
  • Hyperlipidemias / complications
  • Hyperlipidemias / drug therapy*
  • Hyperlipidemias / genetics
  • Hyperlipidemias / metabolism
  • Inflammation / complications
  • Inflammation / drug therapy*
  • Inflammation / genetics
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / drug therapy*
  • Obesity / genetics
  • Obesity / metabolism
  • Osteoarthritis / complications
  • Osteoarthritis / drug therapy*
  • Osteoarthritis / genetics
  • Osteoarthritis / metabolism
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism


  • Adipokines
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Hydrogen Peroxide