Formononetin Antagonizes the Interleukin-1β-Induced Catabolic Effects Through Suppressing Inflammation in Primary Rat Chondrocytes.
Inflammation. 2019 Aug ;42(4):1426-1440. PMID: 30937838
In the present study, we demonstrated the anti-catabolic effects of formononetin, a phytoestrogen derived from herbal plants, against interleukin-1β (IL-1β)-induced severe catabolic effects in primary rat chondrocytes and articular cartilage. Formononetin did not affect the viability of primary rat chondrocytes in both short- (24 h) and long-term (21 days) treatment periods. Furthermore, formononetin effectively antagonized the IL-1β-induced catabolic effects including the decrease in proteoglycan content, suppression of pericellular matrix formation, and loss of proteoglycan through the decreased expression of cartilage-degrading enzymes like matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-13, MMP-1, and MMP-3 in primary rat chondrocytes. Moreover,catabolic oxidative stress mediators like nitric oxide, inducible nitric oxide synthase, cyclooxygenase-2, and prostaglandin Ewere significantly downregulated by formononetin in primary rat chondrocytes treated with IL-1β. Sequentially, the upregulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines (like IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor α), chemokines (like fractalkine, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, and macrophage inflammatory protein-3α), and vascular endothelial growth factor were significantly downregulated by formononetin in primary rat chondrocytes treated with IL-1β. These data suggest that formononetin may suppress IL-1β-induced severe catabolic effects and osteoarthritic condition. Furthermore, formononetin may be a promising candidate for the treatment and prevention of osteoarthritis.