This study details the macromolecular changes in cartilage involving proteoglycan molecules in an animal model of rheumatoid arthritis. In experimental chronic immune synovitis, fluorescein‐conjugated mouse IgG and three monoclonal antibodies (MAbs 2G2, 2E9, and 6C9) portraying differing fine antigenic specificity for rabbit cartilage proteoglycan monomer were utilized to detail alterations in cartilage proteoglycan. In normal and IgG immune animals, fluorescein isothiocynate (FITC)‐conjugated MAbs 2G2 and 2E9 stained cellular/pericellular (C/PC) region intensely. FITC‐MAb 2G2 stained cartilage interterritorial matrix as well. FITC‐MAb 6C9 stained only C/PC area lightly but did not stain matrix. A marked decrease in staining intensity with FITC‐MAb 2G2 was noted in cartilage sections derived from animals with immune synovitis. A corresponding increase in staining of cartilage was noted with FITC‐MAb 6C9. The augmented staining of articular cartilage with FITC‐MAb 6C9 was most prominent in femoral condyle tissue sections, which corresponded to the cartilaginous area, with the greatest severity in gross pathology. There was a slight augmentation of staining with FITC‐MAb 2E9, especially in the C/PC area of medial/femoral cartilage. In addition, the animals with immune synovitis showed abortive cartilage repair exemplified by the presence of chondrocyte cloning (up to 20 cells) which correlated with increased FITC‐MAb 2G2 staining. The differential MAb staining patterns of cartilaginous tissues obtained utilizing FITC‐conjugated monoclonal antibodies with known fine antigenic specificity indicates a modulation of proteoglycans involving predominantly core protein epitopes in the articular cartilage of animals with chronic immune synovitis.
- Monoclonal antibodies
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine