B a c k g r o u n d: Articular cartilage is highly-organized
nonvascularized tissue which is responsible in humans for pressure
absorption under load, as well as for the smoothness of the opposite
tangential bone surfaces.
The purpose of our research is to study structural and functional
features of articular cartilage at lightoptical level by using
state-of-the-art research methods of bone-cartilage tissue.
M a t e r i a l a n d M e t h o d s: The study was conducted on samples
of femoral heads. Hyperfine sections were subject to hematoxylin and
eosin, Van Gieson’s and PAS staining. In order to identify the receptor
profile of chondrocytes and the features of protein arrangement in
extracellular matrix we undertook an immunohistochemical study.
R e s u l t s: An articular cartilage is quite organized tissue. As any
other organ, it has parenchyma and stroma. Parenchyma is represented by
one type of cells — chondrocytes, which, depending on how deep they are
located in cartilage, have a different shape, size and functional
features. The chondrocytes and extracellular matrix have different
degrees of receptors expression.
C o n c l u s i o n s: Th e cartilage is being constantly self-renewed,
what is manifested by means of a rather slow division of the
surface-located chondrocytes and programmed death of dystrophic-modified
cells. The features of extracellular matrix structure determine the
originality of cell location in different areas of cartilage tissue. Due
to synthesis of specific proteins, chondrocytes self-regulate properties
of cartilage tissue.