In search for nutraceuticals as novel approach to anti-inflammatory therapy in osteoarthritis

Proponente Anna Scotto D'Abusco - Professore Associato
Sottosettore ERC del proponente del progetto
Componenti gruppo di ricerca
Componente Categoria
Marco Lollobrigida Dottorando/Assegnista/Specializzando componente non strutturato del gruppo di ricerca
Componente Qualifica Struttura Categoria
Pietro Dalla Vedova Primario di Ortopedia Ospedale Santa Scolastica di Cassino Altro personale aggregato Sapienza o esterni, titolari di borse di studio di ricerca

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common rheumatic disease, and its medical relevance is rising in the Western population, mainly in people over 65. This pathology is characterized by progressive destruction of the extracellular matrix (ECM), causing pain and disability in patients. In the last decades, a growing importance has been given to the chronic and low-grade inflammation in OA etiology.
To date, OA is a non-curable disease, it is treated with analgesic agents, anti-inflammatory and painkiller drugs, mainly non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), with the aim to alleviate the symptoms. Some disease-modifying OA drugs (DMOADs) are also administered to OA patients, with partially inconsistent results, for this reason, a substantial need remains for safe and effective DMOADs.
The aim of this project is to analyze the effects of some nutraceuticals on chronic-inflammation pathways altered in synoviocytes in order to find inhibitors, specific for OA. Previously, we showed that Glucosamine has anti-inflammatory activity in OA chondrocytes, by inhibiting the AP-1 and NF-kB pathways. We will explore the possible anti-inflammatory effects of this molecule on synoviocytes. We will study also the effects Harpagophytum extract on these cells with particular attention to anti-nociceptive pathways. In particular, we are going to explore the intracellular pathways associated with CB2 receptor, such as the activation of inhibitory protein G (Gi), the downregulation of cyclic AMP (cAMP) and the phosphorylation of kinases, as Extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) 1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38).
Finally, we will analyze the effects of contemporary administration of glucosamine and Harpagophytum extract, considering the anti-inflammatory activity of glucosamine on chondrocytes and the possible anti-nociceptive activity of Harpagophytum extract, we expect a synergistic effects on synoviocytes.

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