Comparison of posterior root remnant cells and horn cells of the medial meniscus

Ximing Zhang, Takayuki Furumatsu, Yuki Okazaki, Takaaki Hiranaka, Haowei Xue, Keisuke Kintaka, Shinichi Miyazawa, Toshifumi Ozaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose/Aim of the study: Previous studies have noted distinctions between medial meniscus posterior root and horn cells. However, the characteristics of root remnant cells have not been explored in detail. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the gene expression levels, proliferation, and resistance to mechanical stress of remnant and horn cells. Materials and Methods: Medial meniscus tissue samples were obtained from patients who underwent total or uni-compartmental knee arthroplasty. Cellular morphology, sry-type HMG box 9, type II collagen, and chondromodulin-I gene expression levels were analyzed. Collagen synthesis was assessed by immunofluorescence staining. Proliferation analysis after 4 h-cyclic tensile strain was performed. Results: Horn cells displayed triangular morphology, whereas root remnant cells appeared fibroblast-like. sry-type HMG box 9 mRNA expression levels were similar in both cells, but type II collagen and chondromodulin-I mRNA expressions were observed only in horn cells. The ratio of type II collagen-positive cells in horn cells was about 10-fold higher than that in root remnant cells, whereas the ratio of sry-type HMG box 9-positive cells was similar. A significant increase in proliferation was observed in root remnant cells compared to that in horn cells. Further, under cyclic tensile strain, the survival rate was higher in root remnant cells than in horn cells. Conclusions: Medial meniscus root remnant cells showed higher proliferation and resistant properties to cyclic tensile strain than horn cells and showed no chondromodulin-I expression. Preserving the medial meniscus posterior root remnant during pullout repair surgery might maintain mechanical stress-resistant tissue and support healing.

Original languageEnglish
JournalConnective Tissue Research
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • Medial meniscus
  • anti-angiogenic gene
  • collagen synthesis
  • posterior horn cells
  • posterior root remnant cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Biochemistry
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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