OBJECTIVES: To determine whether or not aggrecanase in synovial fluid can be used as a biochemical marker in the diagnosis of temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJD). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Forty-four samples of synovial fluid were obtained from 35 patients with internal derangement or osteoarthritis and 15 control samples from 1O asymptomatic volunteers. Aggrecanase in the synovial fluid was examined by immunoblotting. RESULT: The incidence of aggrecanase expression in TMJD group were significantly higher than that in the normal control group (P < 0.05). Those with severe OA and anterior disc displacement without reduction showed significantly high expression of aggrecanase compared with other disease subgroups (P < 0.05). CONCLUSION: These findings suggested that aggrecanase could be a potential biochemical marker for cartilage degeneration in the TMJD.
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