gms | German Medical Science

57th Annual Meeting of the German Society of Neurosurgery
Joint Meeting with the Japanese Neurosurgical Society

German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)

11 - 14 May, Essen

The human disc produces endogenous growth factor (BMP 2/4)

Die menschliche Bandscheibe produziert endogen den Wachstumsfaktor BMP 2/4

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author T. Hoell - Spine Center Baden
  • J. Libera - Codon AG Teltow
  • H.J. Holzhausen - Dept. of Pathology Uni Halle/Saale
  • H.J. Meisel - Dept. of Neurosurgery, BG Kliniken, Halle/Saale

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Japanische Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. 57. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e.V. (DGNC), Joint Meeting mit der Japanischen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Essen, 11.-14.05.2006. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2006. DocP 12.197

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: May 8, 2006

© 2006 Hoell et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: Mechanisms of autologous repair of intervertebral discs were studied in 3D cultures of disc cell chondrocytes and in 50 cases of sequestered discs. The endogenous expression of BMP 2/4 was investigated to display the metabolic activity of intradiscal cells.

Methods: BMP 2/4 immuno histo was performed in 50 specimens from lumbar disc surgery as well as in 6 3D cultures from disc specimens. All samples were collected from disc- and fusion surgery

Results: Chondrozytes in 3D cell cultures revealed >75% BMP2/4 expression in 5 of 6 cases. One culture expressed BMP in 50% of the cells. The natural specimens expressed BMP in single chondrocytes in 95% of all specimens. High BMP expression was observed in Clusters of juvenile chondrocytes that appeared as a reaction to degeneration in 70% of the cases.

Conclusions: BMP 2/4, a prominent indicator of metabolic chondrocyte activity, was significantly higher expressed in cultivated disc cells and in endogenic chondrocyte clusters. This observation displays that BMP is expressed by the chondrocytes in high levels. We conclude that the idea to treat discs with BMP or other growth factors might lead to negative interference with the endogenic repair mechanisms.