Chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine sulfate associated to photobiomodulation prevents degenerative morphological changes in an experimental model of osteoarthritis in rats

Lasers Med Sci. 2018 Apr;33(3):549-557. doi: 10.1007/s10103-017-2401-9. Epub 2017 Dec 1.


The aim of this study was to compare the effects of combined treatment with chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine sulfate (CS/Gl) and photobiomodulation (PBM) on the degenerative process related to osteoarthritis (OA) in the articular cartilage in rats. Forty male Wistar rats were randomly divided into four groups: OA control group (CG); OA animals submitted to PBM treatment (PBM); OA animals submitted to CS/Gl treatment (CS/Gl); OA submitted to CS/GS associated with PBM treatments (GS/Gl + PBM). The CS/Gl started 48 h after the surgery, and they were performed for 29 consecutive days. Moreover, PBM was performed after the CS/Gl administration on the left joint. Morphological characteristics and immunoexpression of interleukin 10 (IL-10) and 1 beta (IL-1β) and collagen type II (Col II) of the articular cartilage were evaluated. The results showed that all treated groups (CS/Gl and PBM) presented attenuation signs of degenerative process (measured by histopathological analysis) and lower density chondrocytes [PBM (p = 0.0017); CS/Gl (p = 0.0153) and CS/Gl + PBM (p = 0.002)]. Additionally, CS/Gl [associated (p = 0.0089) or not with PBM (p = 0.0059)] showed significative lower values for OARSI grade evaluation. Furthermore, CS/GS + PBM decreased IL-1β protein expression (p = 0.0359) and increased IL-10 (p = 0.028) and Col II imunoexpression (p = 0.0204) compared to CG. This study showed that CS/Gl associated with PBM was effective in modulating inflammatory process and preventing the articular tissue degradation in the knees OA rats.

Keywords: Articular cartilage; Chondroitin sulfate; Glucosamine sulfate; Knee osteoarthritis; Photobiomodulation.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chondrocytes / drug effects
  • Chondrocytes / pathology
  • Chondrocytes / radiation effects
  • Chondroitin Sulfates / pharmacology
  • Chondroitin Sulfates / therapeutic use*
  • Collagen Type II / metabolism
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Glucosamine / pharmacology
  • Glucosamine / therapeutic use*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interleukin-10 / metabolism
  • Interleukin-1beta / metabolism
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Male
  • Osteoarthritis / drug therapy*
  • Osteoarthritis / metabolism
  • Osteoarthritis / pathology*
  • Osteoarthritis / radiotherapy*
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Collagen Type II
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • Interleukin-10
  • Chondroitin Sulfates
  • Glucosamine