Bovine NP cell expression of IL-6 and Ank genes (qRT-PCR). (a) Expression of IL-6 gene by NP cells treated with IL-1β, IL-1β + FasL, and IL-1β + FasL + NCCM. IL-1β, IL-1β + FasL induce a dramatic increase in the expression of the gene encoding IL-6; however, the use of NCCM results in a dramatic reduction of NP cell expression of IL-6. (b) NP Ank gene expression is significantly down-regulated by the use of IL-1β, IL-1β + FasL; however, this down-regulation is strongly attenuated by NCCM. NCCM was developed from the IVDs of six non-chondrodystrophic canines and pooled together. Bovine NP (target cells) were collected from bovine caudal discs of five animals and pooled together. All qRT-PCR experiments were repeated in quadruplicate and are presented above with standard error calculations performed for all conditions. The statistical significance for NCCM treated cells relative to IL-1β + FasL is indicated by the asterisk and indicator bars and is P < .05. Abbreviations: IL-6 (Interleukin-6), qRT-PCR (quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction), NCCM (notochordal cell conditioned medium), IL-1β (Interleukin 1 beta), FasL (Fas ligand), NCCM (notochordal cell conditioned medium), qRT-PCR (quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction).