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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2008, Vol. 6 ›› Issue (12): 1275-1279.doi: 10.3736/jcim20081213

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of sinomenine on synovial fluid and serum content of interleukin-1β in rabbits with osteoarthritis

Hui-qin Yang(), Li-rong Chen   

  1. Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, Wuhan No. 1 Hospital, Wuhan, Hubei Province 430022, China
  • Received:2008-07-21 Online:2008-12-20 Published:2008-12-15


To investigate the effects of intra-articular injection of sinomenine on interleukin-1β (IL-1β) content in synovial fluid and serum in rabbits with osteoarthritis (OA).


Degenerative osteoarthritis in the knee joint of left posterior limb was induced in 36 rabbits by full extension using plaster cast for 6 weeks. Then the rabbits were randomly divided into untreated group, hyaluronic acid group and sinomenine group. Another 4 normal rabbits were selected as normal control group. Rabbits in the sinomenine group and the hyaluronic acid group received intraarticular injections of sinomenine and hyaluronic acid once a week for 5 weeks, respectively. The content of IL-1β in synovial fluid and serum were measured before and after treatment by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The pathological changes of cartilaginous tissue were analyzed by using Mankin's score.


Compared with those in the untreated group, synovial fluid and serum IL-1β contents in the sinomenine group and the hyaluronic acid group were significantly decreased (P<0.01). And the synovial fluid and serum IL-1β contents in the sinomenine group were lower than those in the hyaluronic acid group (P<0.05). The mean Mankin's score of cartilage in the sinomenine group was significantly lower than that in hyaluronic acid group (P<0.05).


Sinomenine may reduce the degree of articular degeneration in rabbit with OA through decreasing the content of IL-1β in synovial fluid and serum.

Key words: osteoarthritis, sinomenine, interleukin-β, rabbits

CLC Number: 

  • R684.3

Table 1

Changes of IL-1β contents in synovial fluid and serum in four groups (x±s, ng/L)"

Group n Synovial fluid IL-1β content Serum IL-1β content
Pre-treatment Post-treatment Pre-treatment Post-treatment
Normal control 4 10.26±0.02** 10.31±0.20** 7.18±0.01** 7.24±0.17**
Untreated 12 14.57±0.05 14.60±0.22 12.80±0.03 12.84±0.03
Hyaluronic acid 12 14.14±0.29 13.38±0.20** 12.55±0.38 10.55±0.17**
Sinomenine 12 14.04±0.17 11.42±0.26** 12.63±0.17 8.58±0.01**

Figure 1

Pathological sections of articular cartilage by HE staining (Light microscopy, ×100) A: Normal control group; B: Untreated group; C: Hyaluronic acid group; D: Sinomenine group."

Figure 2

Pathological sections of articular cartilage by S/F staining (Light microscopy, ×100) A: Normal control group; B: Untreated group; C: Hyaluronic acid group; D: Sinomenine group."

Table 2

Mankin's score of articular cartilage in four groups (x±s)"

Group n Mankin's score
Normal control 4 1.22±0.02**
Untreated 12 11.22±0.04
Hyaluronic acid 12 8.73±0.05**
Sinomenine 12 6.82±0.05**
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