Healthy and Osteoarthritis-Affected Joints Facing the Cellular Crosstalk

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Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic, progressive, severely debilitating, and multifactorial joint disease that is recognized as the most common type of arthritis. During the last decade, it shows an incremental global rise in prevalence and incidence. The interaction between etiologic factors that mediate joint degradation has been explored in numerous studies. However, the underlying processes that induce OA remain obscure, largely due to the variety and complexity of these mechanisms. During synovial joint dysfunction, the osteochondral unit undergoes cellular phenotypic and functional alterations. At the cellular level, the synovial membrane is influenced by cartilage and subchondral bone cleavage fragments and extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation products from apoptotic and necrotic cells. These "foreign bodies" serve as danger-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) that trigger innate immunity, eliciting and sustaining low-grade inflammation in the synovium. In this review, we explore the cellular and molecular communication networks established between the major joint compartments-the synovial membrane, cartilage, and subchondral bone of normal and OA-affected joints.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4120
Number of pages31
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 18 Feb 2023


  • Humans
  • Cartilage, Articular/metabolism
  • Osteoarthritis/metabolism
  • Joints/metabolism
  • Synovial Membrane/metabolism
  • Bone and Bones/metabolism
  • Inflammation/metabolism

Field of Science*

  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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