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Anal Biochem. 2007 Feb 1;361(1):93-101. Epub 2006 Nov 15.

Discovery and development of a type II collagen neoepitope (TIINE) biomarker for matrix metalloproteinase activity: from in vitro to in vivo.

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Pfizer Global Research and Development, St. Louis, MO 63017, USA.

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  • Anal Biochem. 2007 Nov 15;370(2):258.


Destruction of cartilage by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) plays a significant role in the pathology of osteoarthritis (OA). A translatable biomarker of MMP activity would enable development of MMP inhibitors for the treatment of OA and potentially the improved diagnosis of OA. A directed approach to identifying specific MMP cleavage products as potential biomarkers has been undertaken. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) was used to identify peptides generated by MMP-driven degradation of human articular cartilage (HAC) in vivo. It was shown that a 45-mer peptide fragment of collagen type II with five hydroxyprolines (OH) can be selectively produced by the activity of collagenase, an enzyme purported to be involved in the pathology of OA. This 45-mer is the most abundant neoepitope peptide found in biological fluids such as urine and synovial fluid. An immunoaffinity LC-MS/MS assay has been developed to quantify collagen type II neoepitope peptides as biomarkers of collagenase modulation. The lower limit of quantification for this assay was established to be 0.035 nM. The assay was used to measure the levels of collagen type II peptides in the urine of both clinical (healthy human subjects) and preclinical species. The urinary levels of the most abundant peptides are reported for rat, rabbit, guinea pig, dog, and healthy human adult subjects. The utility of this peptide to monitor collagenase activity in vivo has been demonstrated through its detailed characterization in HAC explants as well as in the urine of human and other preclinical species.

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