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Objective—To evaluate effects of intra-articular and extracapsular reconstruction of the cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) on metabolism of articular cartilage as reflected by concentrations of chondroitin sulfate epitopes 3B3 and 7D4 in synovial fluid.

Animals—13 adult dogs.

Procedure—Each dog underwent unilateral CCL transection (CCLT). One month after CCLT, sham CCL reconstruction (3 dogs), intra-articular CCL reconstruction (5), or extracapsular CCL reconstruction (5) was performed. Synovial fluid was collected by direct arthrocentesis from CCLT and contralateral stifle joints immediately before (time 0) and 1, 3, and 5 months after CCLT. Fluid was examined for concentrations of 3B3 and 7D4 epitopes and total sulfated glycosaminoglycan (GAG) content.

Results—Concentrations of 3B3, 7D4, and GAG, 3B3:GAG, or 7D4:GAG in CCLT joints did not differ significantly among treatment groups nor in the ratios of these variables in CCLT joints to contralateral joints at 3 months. In a longitudinal analysis, concentrations of 3B3 and 7D4, 3B3:GAG, and 7D4:GAG in CCLT joints in all groups changed significantly with time, but we did not detect time X group interactions.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Transection of CCL resulted in significant perturbation in articular cartilage metabolism as reflected by alterations in concentrations of 3B3 and 7D4 in synovial fluid. These changes over time were not significantly influenced by method of CCL reconstruction. We did not find evidence that surgical stabilization of CCL-deficient joints by intra-articular or extracapsular techniques had any effect on preventing alterations in composition of synovial fluid that have been associated with secondary osteoarthritis. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:581–587)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To compare synovial fluid biomarkers of cartilage metabolism in joints with naturally acquired or experimentally induced cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) rupture and determine correlations with stage and severity of disease in dogs.

Animals—95 dogs with ruptured CCL, 8 dogs with experimentally ruptured CCL, and 24 healthy dogs.

Procedure—Synovial fluid was assayed for chondroitin sulfate neo-epitopes 3B3(–) and 7D4 and glycosaminoglycan (GAG) concentration. Results were correlated with demographic data, duration of lameness, radiographic osteoarthritis score, and intra-articular lesions.

Results—The 7D4 concentrations and 7D4:GAG in synovial fluid from joints with naturally acquired CCL rupture and experimental CCL transection were similar and significantly greater than values for healthy control joints. The 3B3(–) concentrations in the CCL-deficient groups were not significantly different, although only values in the naturally acquired CCL rupture group were significantly greater than those in the healthy control group. Within the naturally acquired CCL rupture group there was a significant correlation between 3B3(–) and 7D4 concentrations. However, there were no significant correlations between biomarker concentrations and continuous demographic or diseaserelated variables or differences in biomarker concentrations with different categories of disease.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Synovial fluid biomarker concentrations were significantly increased in joints with secondary osteoarthritis associated with naturally acquired or experimental CCL rupture; however, lack of apparently simple relationships with demographic variables or stage or severity of disease limits their clinical usefulness. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:775–781)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research



To measure and compare values of interleukin 6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor (TNF), and nitric oxide (NO) metabolites in synovial fluid from canine joints with osteoarthritis (OA) secondary to naturally acquired cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) rupture and experimental CCL transection.


57 dogs (clinical group) with OA secondary to CCL rupture; 5 dogs (experimental group) with OA secondary to CCL transection; 19 control dogs with normal joints.


Joints were radiographed and graded for severity of OA. Synovial fluid was collected from dogs: at surgery from the clinical group, at 90 days after surgery from the experimental group, and at necropsy from the control group. Activities of IL-6 and TNF, as well as concentration of the NO metabolites (NO2 /NO3 ) were measured, and results were reported as mean ± SEM.


IL-6 activity in dogs of the clinical (290 ± 40 U/ml) and experimental (494 ± 165 U/ml) groups was greater than that in control dogs (6 ± 1.6 U/ml; P < 0.05). The TNF values in dogs of the clinical (3.0 ± 0.5 pg/ml) and experimental (2.0 ± 0.9 pg/ml) groups were lower than those in control dogs (8.6 ± 2.3 pg/ml; P < 0.05). The IL-6 values were negatively associated with radiographic score of OA and were positively associated with age (R 2 = 26.5%, P < 0.05).


Dogs with OA secondary to naturally acquired CCL rupture and experimental CCL transection had significantly different alterations in synovial fluid IL-6 and TNF values. The decrease in IL-6 activity with advancing OA was independent of the increase in IL-6 activity with aging.

Clinical Relevance

IL-6 and TNF may be involved in pathogenesis of OA secondary to naturally acquired and experimentally induced CCL rupture. (Am J Vet Res 1997;58:1027–1032)

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research