, 37:163 | Cite as

In vitro culture of human chondrocytes (1): A novel enhancement action of ferrous sulfate on the differentiation of human chondrocytes

  • Muhammad Shahidur Rahman
  • Toshie Tsuchiya


Chondrogenic differentiation of mesenchymal cells is generally thought to be initiated by the inductive action of specific growth factors and depends on intimate cell-cell interactions. The aim of our investigation was to characterize the influences of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and ferroussulfate (FeSO4) on proliferation and differentiation of human articular chondrocytes (HAC). This is the first report of the effects of FeSO4 on chondrogenesis of HAC. Multiplied chondrocytes of hip and shoulder joints were cultured in chondrocyte growth medium supplemented with bFGF, FeSO4, or both bFGF + FeSO4 for4weeks. A 20 μl aliquot of a cell suspension containing2 × 107 cells ml−1 was delivered onto each well of 24-well tissue culture plates. Cells cultured with the growth medium only was used as a control. Alamar blue and alcian blue staining were done to determine the chondrocyte proliferation and differentiation, respectively, after 4 weeks. The samples exposed to bFGF, FeSO4, and combination of both indicated sufficient cell proliferation similar to the control level. Differentiations of the HAC exposed to bFGF, FeSO4,and bFGF + FeSO4 were 1.2-, 2.0-, and 2.2-fold of the control, respectively. Therefore, chondrocyte differentiation was significantly enhanced by the addition of FeSO4 andbFGF + FeSO4. The combined effects of bFGF and FeSO4 were additive, rather than synergistic. These results suggest that treatment with ferrous sulfate alone or in combination with basic fibroblast growth factor etc, is a powerful tool to promote the differentiation of HAC for the clinical application.

Basic fibroblast growth factor Enhancement of chondral differentiation Ferrous sulfate Human chondrocytes Micromass culture Tissue engineering 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Muhammad Shahidur Rahman
    • 1
  • Toshie Tsuchiya
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Medical DevicesNational Institute of Health SciencesTokyoJapan

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