Figure 9. mTOR inhibition regulates ECM degradation, inflammation, and apoptosis of LPS-treated chondrocytes. LPS-treated chondrocytes were transfected with si-mTOR. (A) qPCR analysis was performed to confirm the mTOR mRNA levels in each group. (B) The protein levels of type II collagen, MMP13, COX-2, IL-6, and mTOR were determined by WB. (C) The IL-6 level in cells was examined by ELISA. (D) The mRNA levels of type II collagen, MMP13, COX-2, IL-6, and mTOR were determined by WB; results are normalized to the expression of GAPDH. (E) CCK8 assay showing that mTOR silencing inhibited cell proliferation of LPS-treated chondrocytes. (F) Flow cytometry analysis showing apoptosis levels in LPS-treated chondrocytes with mTOR silenced. *P < 0.05, **P < 0.01, ***P < 0.001 vs. LPS group.