Molecular pathology of adverse local tissue reaction caused by metal-on-metal implants defined by RNA-seq

Christopher G. Salib, Eric A. Lewallen, Christopher R. Paradise, Meagan E. Tibbo, Joseph X. Robin, William H. Trousdale, Logan M. Morrey, Jason Xiao, Travis W. Turner, Afton K. Limberg, Anthony G. Jay, Roman Thaler, Amel Dudakovic, Joaquin Sanchez-Sotelo, Mark E. Morrey, Daniel J. Berry, David G. Lewallen, Andre J. van Wijnen, Matthew P. Abdel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Total hip arthroplasty (THA) alleviates hip pain and improves joint function. Current implant design permits long-term survivorship of THAs, but certain metal-on-metal (MoM) articulations can portend catastrophic failure due to adverse local tissue reactions (ALTR). Here, we identified biological and molecular differences between periacetabular synovial tissues of patients with MoM THA failure undergoing revision THA compared to patients undergoing primary THA for routine osteoarthritis (OA). Analysis of tissue biopsies by RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) revealed that MoM patient samples exhibit significantly increased expression of immune response genes but decreased expression of genes related to extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling. Thus, interplay between local tissue inflammation and ECM degradation may account for the pathology and compromised clinical outcomes in select patients with MoM implants. We conclude that adverse responses of host tissues to implant materials result in transcriptomic modifications in patients with MoM implants that permit consideration of strategies that could mitigate ECM damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1404-1411
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2019


  • Adverse local tissue reaction
  • Cell biology
  • Metal-on-metal
  • Metallosis
  • Molecular genetics
  • Total hip arthroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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