View Full Version : Glycosaminoglycans

10-15-2001, 12:52 AM
In response to Greg Erdmann's question about glucosamine:

A number of clinical trials, of varying degrees of rigour in terms of
randomization, blindedness and control, have been published regarding
the efficacy of glycosaminoglycan (glucosamine and/or chondroitin)
dietary supplementation in treating mild to moderate joint surface
degeneration. Most of the studies have involved people with OA of the
knee. To extrapolate to other hyaline cartilage is perhaps not

The most recent good review of the literature is McAlindon et al, JAMA,
283:1469-1475. It reviews the 37 randomized clinical trials published
prior to the review they conducted in 1999. Some further evidence has
been published since, obtainable by searching MEDLINE, etc. As you can
see in this review, the jury is still out to some extent, but the
preponderance of evidence does clearly show some benefit.

I know of no evidence that directly shows benefit for fibrocartilage;
but given that they contain some (less than hyaline cartilage) GAGs, one
might speculate without evidence that it could help.

Doug Richards MD, Dip Sport Med

Medical Director
MacIntosh Sport Medicine Clinic
University of Toronto

PhD Candidate, Biomechanics
University of Waterloo

To unsubscribe send SIGNOFF BIOMCH-L to LISTSERV@nic.surfnet.nl
For information and archives: http://isb.ri.ccf.org/biomch-l