Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

, Volume 359, Issue 1–2, pp 263–269 | Cite as

Nicotine promotes proliferation and collagen synthesis of chondrocytes isolated from normal human and osteoarthritis patients

  • Xiaozhou Ying
  • Shaowen Cheng
  • Yue Shen
  • Xiaojie Cheng
  • Ferdinand An Rompis
  • Wei Wang
  • Zhongqin Lin
  • Qingyu Chen
  • Wei Zhang
  • Dongquan Kou
  • Lei Peng
  • Xin Qiao Tian
  • Chuan Zhu Lu


The aims of the study were to show the direct effect of nicotine with different concentrations (0, 25, 50, and 100 ng/ml) on chondrocytes isolated from normal human and osteoarthritis patients, respectively. Microscopic observation was performed during the culture with an inverted microscope. Methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) assay method was adopted to observe the influence of nicotine on the proliferation of chondrocytes, and real-time PCR and ELISA were used to assay the mRNA and protein expression of type II collagen and aggrecan, respectively. We discovered that the OA chondrocytes were similar to fibroblasts in shape and grow slower than normal chondrocytes. The proliferation of the two kinds of chondrocytes was increased in a concentration-dependent manner and in a time-dependent manner (P < 0.05). Also, we found that the mRNA level of type II collagen were upregulated under 25–100 ng/ml nicotine doses both in the two kinds of chondrocytes compared with control. The expression of protein levels of type II collagen were synthesized in line with the increase in mRNA. No effect was observed on aggrecan synthesis with any nicotine dose. We concluded that nicotine has the same effect on both chondrocytes, obtained either from osteoarthritis patients or from normal human, and the positive effect of smoking in OA may relate to the alteration in metabolism of chondrocytes.


Nicotine Type II collagen Aggrecan OA chondrocytes Real-time PCR 



The authors thank all the staff in the Laboratory of Orthopaedic Research Institute and Scientific Research Center of Second Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical College. This study was supported by grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China(30800220/C100201).

Conflict of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaozhou Ying
    • 1
  • Shaowen Cheng
    • 1
  • Yue Shen
    • 1
  • Xiaojie Cheng
    • 1
  • Ferdinand An Rompis
    • 2
  • Wei Wang
    • 1
  • Zhongqin Lin
    • 3
  • Qingyu Chen
    • 1
  • Wei Zhang
    • 1
  • Dongquan Kou
    • 1
  • Lei Peng
    • 4
  • Xin Qiao Tian
    • 5
  • Chuan Zhu Lu
    • 6
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryThe Second Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical CollegeWenzhouChina
  2. 2.Trauma Center of the Affiliated Hospital of Hainan Medical CollegeWenzhouChina
  3. 3.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryHospital of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine of WenzhouWenzhouChina
  4. 4.The Second Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical College, Trauma Center of the Affiliated Hospital of Hainan Medical CollegeWenzhouChina
  5. 5.Department of UltrasoundThe Second Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical CollegeWenzhouChina
  6. 6.Trauma Center of the Affiliated Hospital of Hainan Medical CollegeHaikouChina

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