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Wnt and Rho GTPase signaling in osteoarthritis development and intervention: implications for diagnosis and therapy

Shouan Zhu12, Huanhuan Liu12, Yan Wu12, Boon Chin Heng3, Pengfei Chen12, Hua Liu12* and Hong Wei Ouyang1234*

Author Affiliations

1 Center for Stem Cell and Tissue Engineering, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 866 Yu Hang Tang Road, Hangzhou, 310058, China

2 Zhejiang Provincial Key Lab for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, Hangzhou, China

3 Department of Biosystems Science & Engineering, ETH-Zurich, Mattenstrasse 26, Basel, Switzerland

4 Department of Sports Medicine, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China

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Arthritis Research & Therapy 2013, 15:217  doi:10.1186/ar4240

Published: 11 July 2013


Wnt and Rho GTPase signaling play critical roles in governing numerous aspects of cell physiology, and have been shown to be involved in endochondral ossification and osteoarthritis (OA) development. In this review, current studies of canonical Wnt signaling in OA development, together with the differential roles of Rho GTPases in chondrocyte maturation and OA pathology are critically summarized. Based on the current scientific literature together with our preliminary results, the strategy of targeting Wnt and Rho GTPase for OA prognosis and therapy is suggested, which is instructive for clinical treatment of the disease.