Gut microbiota dysbiosis has been studied under the pathological conditions of osteoarthritis (OA). However, the effect of antibiotic-induced gut flora dysbiosis on OA remains incompletely understood at present. Herein, we used a mouse (8 weeks) OA model of destabilization of the medial meniscus (DMM) and gut microbiome dysbiosis induced by antibiotic treatment with ampicillin and neomycin for 8 weeks. The results show that antibiotic-induced intestinal microbiota dysbiosis reduced the serum level of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and the inflammatory response, such as suppression of the levels of tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukin-6 (IL-6), which can lead to decreased matrix metalloprotease-13 (MMP-13) expression and improvement of OA after joint injury. In addition,  trabecular thickness (Tb.Th) and osteophyte scores were increased significantly in antibiotic-induced male mice compared with female mice. We further used network correlation analysis to verify the effect of gut microbiota dysbiosis on OA. Therefore, this study contributes to our understanding of the gut-joint axis in OA and reveals the relationship between the inflammatory response, sex and gut microbiota, which may provide new strategies to prevent the symptoms and long-term sequelae of OA.

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