Aging and mechanical overload are prominent risk factors for osteoarthritis (OA), which lead to an imbalance in redox homeostasis. The resulting state of oxidative stress drives the pathological transition of chondrocytes during OA development. However, the specific molecular pathways involved in disrupting chondrocyte redox homeostasis remain unclear. Here, we show that selenophosphate synthetase 1 (SEPHS1) expression is downregulated in human and mouse OA cartilage. SEPHS1 downregulation impairs the cellular capacity to synthesize a class of selenoproteins with oxidoreductase functions in chondrocytes, thereby elevating the level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and facilitating chondrocyte senescence. Cartilage-specific Sephs1 knockout in adult mice causes aging-associated OA, and augments post-traumatic OA, which is rescued by supplementation of N-acetylcysteine (NAC). Selenium-deficient feeding and Sephs1 knockout have synergistic effects in exacerbating OA pathogenesis in mice. Therefore, we propose that SEPHS1 is an essential regulator of selenium metabolism and redox homeostasis, and its dysregulation governs the progression of OA.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)