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Regional molecular and cellular differences in the female rabbit Achilles tendon complex: potential implications for understanding responses to loading
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB), Anatomy.
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2014 (English)In: Journal of Anatomy, ISSN 0021-8782, E-ISSN 1469-7580, Vol. 224, no 5, 538-547 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study was: (i) to analyze the morphology and expression of extracellular matrix genes in six different regions of the Achilles tendon complex of intact normal rabbits; and (ii) to assess the effect of ovariohysterectomy (OVH) on the regional expression of these genes. Female New Zealand White rabbits were separated into two groups: (i) intact normal rabbits (n = 4); and (ii) OVH rabbits (n = 8). For each rabbit, the Achilles tendon complex was dissected into six regions: distal gastrocnemius (DG); distal flexor digitorum superficialis; proximal lateral gastrocnemius (PLG); proximal medial gastrocnemius; proximal flexor digitorum superficialis; and paratenon. For each of the regions, hematoxylin and eosin staining was performed for histological evaluation of intact normal rabbit tissues and mRNA levels for proteoglycans, collagens and genes associated with collagen regulation were assessed by real-time reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction for both the intact normal and OVH rabbit tissues. The distal regions displayed a more fibrocartilaginous phenotype. For intact normal rabbits, aggrecan mRNA expression was higher in the distal regions of the Achilles tendon complex compared with the proximal regions. Collagen Type I and matrix metalloproteinase-2 expression levels were increased in the PLG compared to the DG in the intact normal rabbit tissues. The tendons from OVH rabbits had lower gene expressions for the proteoglycans aggrecan, biglycan, decorin and versican compared with the intact normal rabbits, although the regional differences of increased aggrecan expression in distal regions compared with proximal regions persisted. The tensile and compressive forces experienced in the examined regions may be related to the regional differences found in gene expression. The lower mRNA expression of the genes examined in the OVH group confirms a potential effect of systemic estrogen on tendon.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 224, no 5, 538-547 p.
Keyword [en]
mRNA expression, rabbit Achilles tendon complex, regional differences
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Research subject
Human Anatomy; morfologisk zoologi med utvecklingsbiologisk inriktning
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-88381DOI: 10.1111/joa.12169ISI: 000333578700002OAI: diva2:718296
Available from: 2014-05-20 Created: 2014-05-05 Last updated: 2014-05-20Bibliographically approved

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