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Arthritis Rheum. 1985 Aug;28(8):922-9.

Salicylate-induced depletion of endogenous inorganic sulfate. Potential role in the suppression of sulfated glycosaminoglycan synthesis in murine articular cartilage.


Sodium salicylate has been shown to suppress glycosaminoglycan (GAG) synthesis by articular hyaline cartilage in vitro. We investigated the in vivo effect of sodium salicylate on murine patellar cartilage, using incorporation of intraperitoneally administered 35S-sulfate as a measure of sulfated GAG synthesis. Our results indicated that a single dose of sodium salicylate (200 mg/kg) inhibited in vivo sulfated GAG synthesis by 56%, compared with controls, and had no effect on sulfated GAG breakdown. A striking finding was that sodium sulfate treatment reduced the serum concentration of inorganic sulfate from 1.1 mM to approximately 0.3 mM, and that this serum reduction was associated with a twofold increase in urinary excretion of sulfate. Using anatomically intact patellar cartilage, in vitro studies clearly showed that, in concentrations reached in vivo (greater than or equal to 1 mM), salicylate suppressed murine chondrocyte GAG synthesis. However, in the presence of serum, the effects of 1 mM salicylate were abolished. We also found that sulfated GAG synthesis was clearly inhibited at low concentrations of sulfate (less than 0.5 mM). Our data indicate that sodium salicylate can suppress articular chondrocyte sulfated GAG synthesis in vivo, and that this effect may particularly be due to a drug-induced reduction of endogenous sulfate.

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