Possible role of the Ec peptide of IGF‑1Ec in cartilage repair.
Armakolas N1, Dimakakos A2, Armakolas A2, Antonopoulos A1, Koutsilieris M2.
Mol Med Rep. 2016 Oct;14(4):3066-72. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2016.5627. Epub 2016 Aug 12.
The Ec peptide (PEc) of insulin-like growth factor 1 Ec (IGF-1Ec) induces human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) mobilization and activates extracellular signal‑regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK 1/2) in various cells. The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of PEc on the mobilization and differentiation of hMSCs, as well as the possibility of its implementation in combination with transforming growth factor β1 (TGF‑β1) for cartilage repair. The effects of the exogenous administration of PEc and TGF‑β1, alone and in combination, on hMSCs were assessed using a trypan blue assay, reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction, western blot analysis, Alcian blue staining, wound healing assays and migration/invasion assays. It was determined that PEc is involved in the differentiation process of hMSCs towards hyaline cartilage. Treatment of hMSCs with either PEc, TGF‑β1 or both, demonstrated comparable cartilage matrix deposition. Furthermore, treatment with PEc in combination with TGF‑β1 was associated with a significant increase in hMSC mobilization when compared with treatment with TGF‑β1 or PEc alone (P<0.05). Thus, PEc appears to facilitate in vitro hMSC mobilization and differentiation towards chondrocytes, enhancing the role of TGF‑β1.