Perturbation of nuclear lamin A causes cell death in chondrocytes




Mutations in LMNA encoding the A-type lamins cause several diseases, including those with features of premature aging and skeletal abnormalities. The aim of this study was to examine the expression of lamin A in cartilage from patients with osteoarthritis (OA) and the effects of its overexpression on chondrocyte senescence and apoptosis.


Human chondrocyte-like cells (SW-1353) were used. RNA isolated from human OA and non-OA cartilage was used for profiling messenger RNA expression, using Affymetrix microarray analysis. The effects of lamin A overexpression on mitochondrial function and apoptosis were examined by assessing mitochondrial membrane potential, ATP levels, and cytochrome c release, and with a TUNEL assay. Western blotting was performed to determine protein expression.


Lamin A expression was markedly elevated in OA cartilage samples compared with non-OA control samples. Western blot analysis confirmed increased expression of lamin A in OA compared with non-OA cartilage. Interleukin-1β treatment inhibited lamin A accumulation, whereas treatment with prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) caused a marked increase in lamin A accumulation. These effects of exogenous PGE2 on lamin A expression were mediated via the EP2/EP4 receptors. Transfected chondrocytes that expressed lamin A displayed markers of early senescence/apoptosis.


The results of this study suggest that lamin A is up-regulated in OA chondrocytes, and that increased nuclear accumulation of lamin A in response to catabolic stress may account for the premature aging phenotype and apoptosis of OA chondrocytes.