Differential effects of nicotine and tobacco smoke condensate on human annulus fibrosus cell metabolism.

Ferguson Laboratory for Orthopaedic Research, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15261, USA.
Journal of Orthopaedic Research (Impact Factor: 2.88). 03/2011; 29(10):1585-91. DOI: 10.1002/jor.21417
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Tobacco smoking increases the risk of intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD) and back pain, but the mechanisms underlying the adverse effects of smoking are largely unknown. Current hypotheses predict that smoking contributes to IDD indirectly through nicotine-mediated vasoconstriction which limits the exchange of nutrients between the discs and their surroundings. We alternatively hypothesize that direct contact of disc cells, that is, cells in the outermost annulus and those present along fissures in degenerating discs, with the vascular system containing soluble tobacco smoking constituents could perturb normal metabolic activities resulting in IDD. In this study, we tested our hypothesis by comparing the effects of direct exposure of human disc cells to tobacco smoke condensate and nicotine on cell viability and metabolic activity. We showed that smoke condensate, which contains all of the water-soluble compounds inhaled by smokers, exerts greater detrimental effects on human disc cell viability and metabolism than nicotine. Smoke condensate greatly induced an inflammatory response and gene expression of metalloproteinases while reduced active matrix synthesis and expression of matrix structural genes. Therefore, we have demonstrated that disc cell exposure to the constituents of tobacco smoke has negative consequences which have the potential to alter disc matrix homeostasis.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Abstract Intervertebral discs comprise the largest avascular cartilaginous organ in the body, and its nutrient condition can be impaired by degeneration, aging, and even metabolic disease. The unique microenvironment brings special stresses to various disc cell types, including nucleus pulposus cells, notochordal cells, annulus fibrosus cells, and endplate chondrocytes. These cells experience nutrient starvation, acidic stress, hypoxic stress, hyperglycemic stress, osmotic stress, and mechanical stress. Understanding the detailed responses and complex adaptive mechanisms of disc cells to various stresses might provide some clues to guide therapy for disc degeneration. By reviewing the published literatures describing disc cells under different hostile microenvironments, we conclude that these cells exhibit different responses to microenvironmental stresses with different mechanisms. Moreover, the interaction and combination of these stresses create a complex environment that synergistically increase or decrease influences on disc cells, compared with the effects of a single stress. Interestingly, most of these stresses activate autophagy, a self-protective mechanism by which dysfunctional protein and organelles are degraded. It is becoming clear that autophagy facilitates the cellular adaptation to stresses and might play a central role in regulating the adaptation of disc cells under stress. Therefore, autophagy modulation might be a potential therapeutic method to treat disc degeneration.
    Connective tissue research. 07/2014;
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The purpose of the present study was to simultaneously examine the transcript levels of a large number of interleukins (ILs; IL-9, IL-10, IL-12, IL-13, IL-16, IL-17, IL-18, IL-26, and IL-27) and investigate their correlation with the clinicopathological profiles of patients with tuberculous intervertebral discs.
    PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(6):e101324. · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The intervertebral disk (IVD) is a fascinating and resilient tissue compartment given the myriad of functions that it performs as well as its unique anatomy. The IVD must tolerate immense loads, protect the spinal cord, and contribute considerable flexibility and strength to the spinal column. In addition, as a consequence of its anatomical and physiological configuration, a unique characteristic of the IVD is that it also provides a barrier to metastatic disease. However, when injured and/or the subject of significant degenerative change, the IVD can be the source of substantial pain and disability. Considerable efforts have been made over the past several decades with respect to regenerating or at least modulating degenerative changes affecting the IVD through the use of many biological agents such as growth factors, hydrogels, and the use of plant sterols and even spices common to Ayurvedic medicine. More recently stem/progenitor and autologous chondrocytes have been used mostly in animal models of disk disease but also a few trials involving humans. At the end of the day if biological therapies are to offer benefit to the patient, the outcomes must be improved function and/or less pain and also must be improvements upon measures that are already in clinical practice. Here some of the challenges posed by the degenerative IVD and a summary of some of the regenerative attempts both in vitro and in vivo are discussed within the context of the vital question: "Who is the patient?"
    Global spine journal. 06/2013; 3(3):193-200.