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Local administration of interleukin-1 receptor antagonist inhibits deterioration of mechanical properties of the stress-shielded patellar tendon

Shin Miyatake, Harukazu Tohyama, Eiji Kondo, Taro Katsura, Shin Onodera, Kazunori Yasuda
Journal of Biomechanics 2008, 41 (4): 884-9
18062978
We previously found that interleukin (IL)-1beta is over-expressed in the fibroblasts of the stress-shielded patellar tendon using a stress-shielding model [Uchida, H., Tohyama, H., Nagashima, K., Ohba, Y., Matsumoto, H., Toyama, Y., Yasuda, K., 2005. Stress deprivation simultaneously induces over-expression of interleukin-1beta, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, and transforming growth factor-beta in fibroblasts and mechanical deterioration of the tissue in the patellar tendon. Journal of Biomechanics 38(4), 791-798.]. Therefore, IL-1beta may play a role in tendon deterioration in response to stress deprivation. This study was conducted to clarify the effects of local administration of interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) on the mechanical properties of the stress-shielded patellar tendon as well as the tendon fascicles harvested from it. Twenty-six mature rabbits were equally divided into Groups IL-1ra and PBS after the right patellar tendon underwent the stress-shielding treatment, which completely released the patellar tendon from tension by stretching the flexible wire installed between the patella and the tibial tubercle. In Group IL-1ra, IL-1ra was injected between the patellar tendon and the infra-patellar fat pad. In Group PBS, phosphate-buffered saline was injected in the same manner as IL-1ra. All rabbits were evaluated at 3 weeks after the stress-shielding procedure. The tangent modulus and the tensile strength of the patellar tendons were significantly greater in Group IL-1ra than in Group PBS, while there was no significant difference in the strain at failure between Groups IL-1ra and PBS. Concerning the mechanical properties of the fascicles harvested from the patellar tendon, however, we could not detect any significant differences in the tangent modulus, tensile strength, or strain at failure between Groups IL-1ra and PBS. The present study suggested that IL-1 plays an important role in the deterioration of the mechanical properties of the patellar tendon in response to stress shielding and that IL-1 does not affect the fascicles themselves.

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