Objective—To examine longitudinal changes in serum and synovial fluid concentrations of keratan sulfate (KS) and hyaluronan (HA) after cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) transection in dogs.
Animals—12 clinically normal adult mixed-breed dogs.
Procedure—Following CCL transection in the right stifle joint, KS and HA concentrations were determined in serum and neat (undiluted) synovial fluid prior to and 1, 2, 3, and 12 months after surgery. Postsurgical dilution of synovial fluid was corrected by use of urea as a passive marker.
Results—Synovial fluid KS and HA concentrations decreased at 1, 2, and 3 months after surgery in operated stifle joints, compared with baseline values. Synovial fluid KS concentration decreased in unoperated stifle joints at 1 month. A decrease in synovial fluid KS concentration was found in operated stifle joints, compared with unoperated stifle joints, at 2 and 3 months, and a decrease in synovial fluid HA concentrations was also found in operated stifle joints, compared with unoperated stifle joints, at 1, 2, and 3 months. Serum KS concentrations increased from baseline values at 3 months after surgery. Hyaluronan concentrations in operated stifle joints were lower than baseline values at 1, 2, and 3 months. Urea-adjusted synovial fluid concentrations revealed that dilution did not account for the decline in biomarker concentrations.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The initial decrease and subsequent increase in synovial fluid concentrations of HA and KS may be caused by an acute inflammatory response to surgical intervention that negatively affects cartilage metabolism or an increase in production of immature proteoglycans.