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Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2008 Dec;16(12):1532-8. doi: 10.1016/j.joca.2008.04.013. Epub 2008 Jun 5.

Novel synovial fluid recovery method allows for quantification of a marker of arthritis in mice.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, United States.

Erratum in

  • Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2012 Jan;20(1):68.



We evaluated three methodologies--a calcium sodium alginate compound (CSAC), polyacrylate beads (PABs), and Whatman paper recovery (WPR)--for the ability to recover synovial fluid (SF) from mouse knees in a manner that facilitated biochemical marker analysis.


Pilot testing of each of these recovery vehicles was conducted using small volumes of waste human SF. CSAC emerged as the method of choice, and was used to recover and quantify SF from the knees of C57BL/6 mice (n=12), six of which were given left knee articular fractures. SF concentrations of cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.


The mean concentration ratio [(COMP(left knee))/(COMP(right knee))] was higher in the mice subjected to articular fracture when compared to the non-fracture mice (P=0.026). The mean total COMP ratio (taking into account the quantitative recovery of SF) best discriminated between fracture and non-fracture knees (P=0.004).


Our results provide the first direct evidence of accelerated joint tissue turnover in a mouse model responding to acute joint injury. These data strongly suggest that mouse SF recovery is feasible and that biomarker analysis of collected SF samples can augment traditional histological analyses in mouse models of arthritis.

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