Collagenase 1 and collagenase 3 expression in a guinea pig model of osteoarthritis

Arthritis Rheum. 1998 May;41(5):877-90. doi: 10.1002/1529-0131(199805)41:5<877::AID-ART16>3.0.CO;2-#.


Objective: To analyze the in vivo compartmental expression of collagenases 1 and 3 (MMP-1 and MMP-13) in the Hartley guinea pig model of spontaneously occurring osteoarthritis (OA) for the purpose of elucidating their roles in the pathogenesis of OA.

Methods: Competitive reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry quantification of messenger RNA (mRNA) and protein levels in medial and lateral tibial cartilage obtained from the knee joints of 2-month-old (no OA) and 12-month-old (OA) guinea pigs.

Results: The patterns of mRNA expression of collagenases 1 and 3 varied with the age of the animal and the compartment of the knee. We also found focal areas of collagenase 1 and collagenase 3 proteins localized to the extracellular matrix of OA lesion sites, coincident with three-quarter/one-quarter collagen cleavage. Collagenase 3 protein was also abundant throughout the medial tibial cartilage of 2-month-old animals.

Conclusion: This represents the first description of bona fide collagenase 1 in a rodent species. Recent evidence, however, based on analysis of mitochondrial DNA homologies, suggests that the guinea pig is not a member of the order Rodentia and may be more closely allied with lagomorphs. This taxonomic controversy leaves open to question the issue of the expression of collagenase 1 in other rodents, such as mice and rats. The presence of active collagenases 1 and 3 at OA lesion sites is consistent with an important role of these enzymes in the cartilage degradation of OA in guinea pigs. The expression of collagenase 3 in medial tibial cartilage from 2-month-old guinea pigs may signify a role of this enzyme in cartilage remodeling with growth and development, or it may represent an early molecular manifestation of OA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Southern
  • Collagenases / genetics
  • Collagenases / metabolism*
  • DNA Primers / chemistry
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Glyceraldehyde-3-Phosphate Dehydrogenases / genetics
  • Glyceraldehyde-3-Phosphate Dehydrogenases / metabolism
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 13
  • Menisci, Tibial / enzymology
  • Menisci, Tibial / pathology
  • Mice
  • Osteoarthritis / enzymology*
  • Osteoarthritis / etiology
  • Osteoarthritis / pathology
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Species Specificity


  • DNA Primers
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Glyceraldehyde-3-Phosphate Dehydrogenases
  • Collagenases
  • MMP13 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 13
  • Mmp13 protein, mouse
  • Mmp13 protein, rat
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AF011391
  • GENBANK/AF030865
  • GENBANK/AF030866
  • GENBANK/U51006
  • GENBANK/U51572