Background: To investigate serum and epiphyseal plate expression of cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP) in rats fed with Kashin-Beck disease (KBD)—affected diet.
Methods: Two hundred Wistar rats were divided into five groups. Group A was fed with a normal diet as control; group B was fed with a normal diet and trichothecene (T-2) toxin; group C was fed with a low nutrition diet and T-2 toxin; group D was fed with a low nutrition diet; and group E was fed with a KBD-affected diet. The serum bioactivity of COMP was tested by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay. The epiphyseal plate COMP messenger RNA (mRNA) was detected by reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Histological sections were stained with hematoxylin and eosin (HE).
Results: After 4 weeks, the epiphyseal plate showed more intense necrosis of chondrocytes in groups B, C, and E. The serum levels of COMP and epiphyseal plate COMP mRNA levels in group E at 12 weeks were the highest of all groups and had significant difference when compared with other groups (P<0.05). Compared with other groups, the variation trend of the serum levels of COMP and epiphyseal plate COMP mRNA levels in group C were similar to group E from week 1 week to week 12.
Conclusions: These findings demonstrate COMP metabolism in serum and epiphyseal plate expression were altered in KBD and may play a role as a potential biomarker for monitoring pathogenic progression of cartilage destruction of KBD.