Figure 1. Distinct morphology and HO-1 expression in NP tissues isolated from LVF and IDD groups. (A) Representative lumbar MRI photographs show the grade I and grade V intervertebral discs in the LVF (left) and IDD (right) patient tissues, respectively, as indicted by the red arrows. The tissues were graded using the Pfirrmann’s grading system. (B) Immunohistochemical staining shows the expression of HO-1 and collagen II expression in the NPCs from LVF and IDD patients. The black arrows indicate positively staining cells. (C) Western blot shows the proteins expressions of HO-1 and LC3-II/I in NP tissue samples from LVF and IDD patients. Note: The data represents mean ± SD of three experiments; **p<0.01.