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Editorial

The meniscus, calcification and osteoarthritis: a pathologic team

Paul A MacMullan1 and Geraldine M McCarthy12*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 123, St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, Ireland

2 Division of Rheumatology, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital and University College Dublin, Eccles St, Dublin 7, Ireland

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Arthritis Research & Therapy 2010, 12:116  doi:10.1186/ar2993


See related research article by Sun et al., http://arthritis-research.com/content/12/2/R56

Published: 20 May 2010

Abstract

Articular calcification correlates with osteoarthritis (OA) severity but its exact role in the disease process is unclear. In examining OA meniscal cell function, Sun and colleagues have shown recently that meniscal cells from end-stage OA subjects can generate calcium crystals and that genes involved in calcification are upregulated in OA meniscal cells. Also, this in vitro calcium deposition by OA menisci is inhibited by phosphocitrate. This study should catalyse further work examining the pathological contribution or otherwise of calcium crystals in OA. This would significantly aid the development of potential disease modifying agents in OA, which are currently unavailable.