Effects of ascorbic acid on proliferation and biological properties of bovine chondrocytes in alginate beads

Gonhyung Kim, Masahiro Okumura, Darko Bosnakovski, Taketo Ishiguro, Chun Ho Park, Tsuyoshi Kadosawa, Toru Fujinaga

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16 Scopus citations


Bovine chondrocytes were cultured in monolayers and alginate beads with or without ascorbic acid (Asc) for 16 days. Cell proliferation was examined every 4 days by staining with Hoechst 33258 dye. The gene expression of aggrecan, and collagen type I and II was analyzed at 16 days by reverse transcription and polymerase chain reaction. Cell morphology and the production of extracellular matrix (ECM) were evaluated by cytochemical, immunocytochemical and electron microscopical methods. Cells were continuously cultured in alginate beads with Asc for 2 months, and the cell morphology and ECM were examined. The proliferation of chondrocytes was significantly stimulated with Asc in both monolayers and alginate beads at 16 days. Expression of the collagen type I gene in both cultures was increased, and that of the collagen type II gene in alginate beads was decreased, by Asc. There were no significant cytochemical and immunocytochemical differences between the cultures in alginate beads with or without Asc at 16 days. In alginate beads cultured with Asc for 2 months, proliferating cells were observed mainly at the periphery of the beads, and glycosaminoglycan and collagen type II were found around the cells. These results suggest that Asc stimulated the proliferation of chondrocytes and maintained the chondrogenic properties of the cells in an alginate beads culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-94
Number of pages12
JournalJapanese Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Alginate
  • Bovine
  • Cartilage tissue engineering
  • Chondrocytes


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