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Zhongguo Gu Shang. 2013 Aug;26(8):681-8.

[Enhancement of meniscal tearing damage repairing in the avascular zone using connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) in the rabbit model].

[Article in Chinese]

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Department of Orthopaedics, the 305th Hospital of People's Liberation Army, Beijing 100017, China.



To investigate effect of connective tissue growth factors (CTGF) on secretion of extracellular matrix synthesis of meniscal fibrochondrocytes, expression of vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF), and angiogenesis during the repair of meniscal tearing damage.


Meniscal fibrochondrocytes were isolated from the inner--1/2 of rabbits' meniscus by collagenase enzymatic digestion, centrifugal separation, and treated with 100 ng/ml CTGF in vitro. Characterization of fibrochondrocytes was identified by flow cytometry analysising CD31, CD44, CD45 and CD105, and was further tested by type II collagen immunocytochemistry. Changes in gene expression of meniscal fibrochondrocytes were monitored by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. In vitro, the sections of the 3 mm of the longitudinal teared in the middle of the rabbit's meniscus, and then the defects were dealed with simple suture, suture and implanting with PBS-fibrin glue, sutured and implanting with 1.5 microg CTGF respectively. Expression and distribution of type I and II collagen and VEGF, the tearing healing were observed by fluorescence-immunohistochemisty analysis on the 1st week, the 4th week and the 10th week.


Quantitative RT-PCR assays showed that type I and type II collagen,and VEGF mRNA expression in the 100 ng/ml CTGF group had been remarkably enhanced than in the PBS group on the 14th day. Consistent with these effects in vitro, fluorescence-immunohistochemical analysis revealed that in the group implanted with CTGF-fibrin glue, type I collagen, type I collagen and capillaries completely filled the defect on the 10th week postoperatively. In contrast, only soft tissue repair occurred after the PBS-fibrin glue was implanted.


CTGF can significantly promote extracellular matrix (I collagen, II collagen) of the meniscal avascular zone synthesis, and CTGF can greatly heighten the expression of VEGF activity at the same time in vitro, so that it can further enhance the repair of meniscal tearing damage in the avascular zone.

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