Lipids and collagen matrix restrict the hydraulic permeability within the porous compartment of adult cortical bone.
ABSTRACT: In vivo the hydraulic permeability of cortical bone influences the transport of nutrients, waste products and signaling molecules, thus influencing the metabolic functions of osteocytes and osteoblasts. In the current study two hypotheses were tested: the presence of (1) lipids and (2) collagen matrix in the porous compartment of cortical bone restricts its permeability. Our approach was to measure the radial permeability of adult canine cortical bone before and after extracting lipids with acetone-methanol, and before and after digesting collagen with bacterial collagenase. Our results showed that the permeability of adult canine cortical bone was below 4.0x10(-17) m2, a value consistent with prior knowledge. After extracting lipids, permeability increased to a median value of 8.6x10(-16) m2. After further digesting with collagenase, permeability increased to a median value of 1.4x10(-14) m2. We conclude that the presence of both lipids and collagen matrix within the porous compartment of cortical bone restricts its radial permeability. These novel findings suggest that the chemical composition of the tissue matrix within the porous compartment of cortical bone influences the transport and exchange of nutrients and waste products, and possibly influences the metabolic functions of osteocytes and osteoblasts.
Project description:Gerodermia osteodysplastica (GO) is characterized by skin laxity and early-onset osteoporosis. GORAB, the responsible disease gene, encodes a small Golgi protein of poorly characterized function. To circumvent neonatal lethality of the GorabNull full knockout, Gorab was conditionally inactivated in mesenchymal progenitor cells (Prx1-cre), pre-osteoblasts (Runx2-cre), and late osteoblasts/osteocytes (Dmp1-cre), respectively. While in all three lines a reduction in trabecular bone density was evident, only GorabPrx1 and GorabRunx2 mutants showed dramatically thinned, porous cortical bone and spontaneous fractures. Collagen fibrils in the skin of GorabNull mutants and in bone of GorabPrx1 mutants were disorganized, which was also seen in a bone biopsy from a GO patient. Measurement of glycosaminoglycan contents revealed a reduction of dermatan sulfate levels in skin and cartilage from GorabNull mutants. In bone from GorabPrx1 mutants total glycosaminoglycan levels and the relative percentage of dermatan sulfate were both strongly diminished. Accordingly, the proteoglycans biglycan and decorin showed reduced glycanation. Also in cultured GORAB-deficient fibroblasts reduced decorin glycanation was evident. The Golgi compartment of these cells showed an accumulation of decorin, but reduced signals for dermatan sulfate. Moreover, we found elevated activation of TGF-? in GorabPrx1 bone tissue leading to enhanced downstream signalling, which was reproduced in GORAB-deficient fibroblasts. Our data suggest that the loss of Gorab primarily perturbs pre-osteoblasts. GO may be regarded as a congenital disorder of glycosylation affecting proteoglycan synthesis due to delayed transport and impaired posttranslational modification in the Golgi compartment.
Project description:Fossils were thought to lack original organic molecules, but chemical analyses show that some can survive. Dinosaur bone has been proposed to preserve collagen, osteocytes, and blood vessels. However, proteins and labile lipids are diagenetically unstable, and bone is a porous open system, allowing microbial/molecular flux. These 'soft tissues' have been reinterpreted as biofilms. Organic preservation versus contamination of dinosaur bone was examined by freshly excavating, with aseptic protocols, fossils and sedimentary matrix, and chemically/biologically analyzing them. Fossil 'soft tissues' differed from collagen chemically and structurally; while degradation would be expected, the patterns observed did not support this. 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing revealed that dinosaur bone hosted an abundant microbial community different from lesser abundant communities of surrounding sediment. Subsurface dinosaur bone is a relatively fertile habitat, attracting microbes that likely utilize inorganic nutrients and complicate identification of original organic material. There exists potential post-burial taphonomic roles for subsurface microorganisms.
Project description:Osteocytes have been implicated in the control of bone formation. However, the signal transduction pathways that regulate the biological function of osteocytes are poorly defined. Limited evidence suggests an important role for the Gs/cAMP pathway in osteocyte function. In the present study, we explored the hypothesis that cAMP-dependent kinase A (PKA) activation in osteocytes plays a key role in controlling skeletal homeostasis. To test this hypothesis, we mated mice harboring a Cre-conditional, mutated PKA catalytic subunit allele that encodes a constitutively active form of PKA (C?R) with mice expressing Cre under the control of the osteocyte-specific promoter, DMP1. This allowed us to direct the expression of C?R to osteocytes in double transgenic progeny. Examination of Cre expression indicated that C?R was also expressed in late osteoblasts. Cortical and trabecular bone parameters from 12-week old mice were determined by ?CT. Expression of C?R in osteocytes and late osteoblasts altered the shape of cortical bone proximal to the tibia-fibular junction (TFJ) and produced a significant increase in its size. In trabecular bone of the distal femur, fractional bone volume, trabecular number, and trabecular thickness were increased. These increases were partially the results of increased bone formation rates (BFRs) on the endosteal surface of the cortical bone proximal to the TFJ as well as increased BFR on the trabecular bone surface of the distal femur. Mice expressing C?R displayed a marked increase in the expression of osteoblast markers such as osterix, runx2, collagen 1?1, and alkaline phosphatase (ALP). Interestingly, expression of osteocyte marker gene, DMP1, was significantly up-regulated but the osteocyte number per bone area was not altered. Expression of SOST, a presumed target for PKA signaling in osteocytes, was significantly down-regulated in females. Importantly, no changes in bone resorption were detected. In summary, constitutive PKA signaling in osteocytes and late osteoblasts led to a small expansion of the size of the cortical bone proximal to the TFJ and an increase in trabecular bone in female mice. This was associated with down-regulation of SOST and up-regulation of several osteoblast marker genes. Activation of the PKA pathway in osteocytes and late osteoblasts is sufficient for the initiation of an anabolic skeletal response.
Project description:Mineralized bone forms when collagen-containing osteoid accrues mineral crystals. This is initiated rapidly (primary mineralization), and continues slowly (secondary mineralization) until bone is remodeled. The interconnected osteocyte network within the bone matrix differentiates from bone-forming osteoblasts; although osteoblast differentiation requires EphrinB2, osteocytes retain its expression. Here we report brittle bones in mice with osteocyte-targeted EphrinB2 deletion. This is not caused by low bone mass, but by defective bone material. While osteoid mineralization is initiated at normal rate, mineral accrual is accelerated, indicating that EphrinB2 in osteocytes limits mineral accumulation. No known regulators of mineralization are modified in the brittle cortical bone but a cluster of autophagy-associated genes are dysregulated. EphrinB2-deficient osteocytes displayed more autophagosomes in vivo and in vitro, and EphrinB2-Fc treatment suppresses autophagy in a RhoA-ROCK dependent manner. We conclude that secondary mineralization involves EphrinB2-RhoA-limited autophagy in osteocytes, and disruption leads to a bone fragility independent of bone mass.
Project description:Osteoarthritis (OA), long considered a primary disorder of articular cartilage, is commonly associated with subchondral bone sclerosis. However, the cellular mechanisms responsible for changes to subchondral bone in OA, and the extent to which these changes are drivers of or a secondary reaction to cartilage degeneration, remain unclear. In knee joints from human patients with end-stage OA, we found evidence of profound defects in osteocyte function. Suppression of osteocyte perilacunar/canalicular remodeling (PLR) was most severe in the medial compartment of OA subchondral bone, with lower protease expression, diminished canalicular networks, and disorganized and hypermineralized extracellular matrix. As a step toward evaluating the causality of PLR suppression in OA, we ablated the PLR enzyme MMP13 in osteocytes while leaving chondrocytic MMP13 intact, using Cre recombinase driven by the 9.6-kb DMP1 promoter. Not only did osteocytic MMP13 deficiency suppress PLR in cortical and subchondral bone, but it also compromised cartilage. Even in the absence of injury, osteocytic MMP13 deficiency was sufficient to reduce cartilage proteoglycan content, change chondrocyte production of collagen II, aggrecan, and MMP13, and increase the incidence of cartilage lesions, consistent with early OA. Thus, in humans and mice, defects in PLR coincide with cartilage defects. Osteocyte-derived MMP13 emerges as a critical regulator of cartilage homeostasis, likely via its effects on PLR. Together, these findings implicate osteocytes in bone-cartilage crosstalk in the joint and suggest a causal role for suppressed perilacunar/canalicular remodeling in osteoarthritis.
Project description:Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a common disease of aging and increases fracture risk over advanced age alone. Aging and CKD differently impair bone turnover and mineralization. We thus hypothesize that the loss of bone quality would be greatest with the combination of advanced age and CKD. We evaluated bone from young adult (6 mo.), middle-age (18 mo.), and old (24 mo.) male C57Bl/6 mice three months following either 5/6th nephrectomy, to induce CKD, or Sham procedures. CKD exacerbated losses of cortical and trabecular microarchitecture associated with aging. Aging and CKD each resulted in thinner, more porous cortices and fewer and thinner trabeculae. Bone material quality was also reduced with CKD, and these changes to bone material were distinct from those due to age. Aging reduced whole-bone flexural strength and modulus, micrometer-scale nanoindentation modulus, and nanometer-scale tissue and collagen strain (small-angle x-ray scattering [SAXS]. By contrast, CKD reduced work to fracture and variation in bone tissue modulus and composition (Raman spectroscopy), and increased percent collagen strain. The increased collagen strain burden was associated with loss of toughness in CKD. In addition, osteocyte lacunae became smaller, sparser, and more disordered with age for Sham mice, yet these age-related changes were not clearly observed in CKD. However, for CKD, larger lacunae positively correlated with increased serum phosphate levels, suggesting that osteocytes play a role in systemic mineral homeostasis. This work demonstrates that CKD reduces bone quality, including microarchitecture and bone material properties, and that loss of bone quality with age is compounded by CKD. These findings may help reconcile why bone mass does not consistently predict fracture in the CKD population, as well as why older individuals with CKD are at high risk of fragility.
Project description:Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) is characterized by osteopenia and bone fragility, and OI patients during growth often exhibit high bone turnover with the net result of low bone mass. Recent evidence shows that osteocytes significantly affect bone remodeling under physiological and pathological conditions through production of osteoclastogenic cytokines. The receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand (RANKL) produced by osteocytes for example, is a critical mediator of bone loss caused by ovariectomy, low-calcium diet, unloading and glucocorticoid treatment. Because OI bone has increased density of osteocytes and these cells are embedded in matrix with abnormal type I collagen, we hypothesized that osteocyte-derived RANKL contributes to the OI bone phenotype. In this study, the conditional loss of RANKL in osteocytes in oim/oim mice (oim-RANKL-cKO) resulted in dramatically increased cancellous bone mass in both the femur and lumbar spine compared to oim/oim mice. Bone cortical thickness increased significantly only in spine but ultimate bone strength in the long bone and spine was minimally improved in oim-RANKL-cKO mice compared to oim/oim mice. Furthermore, unlike previous findings, we report that oim/oim mice do not exhibit high bone turnover suggesting that their low bone mass is likely due to defective bone formation and not increased bone resorption. The loss of osteocyte-derived RANKL further diminished parameters of formation in oim-RANKL-cKO. Our results indicate that osteocytes contribute significantly to the low bone mass observed in OI and the effect of loss of RANKL from these cells is similar to its systemic inhibition.
Project description:Porous calcium phosphate ceramics are used in orthopedic and craniofacial applications to treat bone loss, or in dental applications to replace missing teeth. The implantation of these materials, however, does not induce stem cell differentiation, so suitable additional materials such as porous calcium phosphate discs are needed to influence physicochemical responses or structural changes. Rabbit adipose-derived stem cells (ADSC) and mouse osteoblastic cells (MC3T3-E1) were evaluated in vitro by the MTT assay, semi-quantitative RT-PCR, and immunoblotting using cells cultured in medium supplemented with extracts from bioceramics, including calcium metaphosphate (CMP), hydroxyapatite (HA) and collagen-grafted HA (HA-col). In vivo evaluation of the bone forming capacity of these bioceramics in rat models using femur defects and intramuscular implants for 12 weeks was performed. Histological analysis showed that newly formed stromal-rich tissues were observed in all the implanted regions and that the implants showed positive immunoreaction against type I collagen and alkaline phosphatase (ALP). The intramuscular implant region, in particular, showed strong positive immunoreactivity for both type I collagen and ALP, which was further confirmed by mRNA expression and immunoblotting results, indicating that each bioceramic material enhanced osteogenesis stimulation. These results support our hypothesis that smart bioceramics can induce osteoconduction and osteoinduction in vivo, although mature bone formation, including lacunae, osteocytes, and mineralization, was not prominent until 12 weeks after implantation.
Project description:Osteoblast lineage cells, a group of cells including mesenchymal progenitors, osteoblasts, and osteocytes, are tightly controlled for differentiation, proliferation and stage-specific functions in processes of skeletal development, growth and maintenance. Recently, the plasma membrane calcium channel Orai1 was highlighted for its role in skeletal development and osteoblast differentiation. Yet the roles of Orai1 in osteoblast lineage cells at various stages of maturation have not been investigated. Herein we report the severe bone loss that occurred in Orai1-/- mice, aggravated by aging, as shown by the microcomputed tomography (mCT) and bone histomorphometry analysis of 8-week and 12-week old Orai1-/- mice and sex-matched WT littermates. We also report that Orai1 deficiency affected the differentiation, proliferation, and type I collagen secretion of primary calvarial osteoblasts, mesenchymal progenitors, and osteocytes in Orai1-/- mice; specifically, our study revealed a significant decrease in the expression of osteocytic genes Fgf23, DMP1 and Phex in the cortical long bone of Orai1-/- mice; a defective cellular and nuclear morphology of Orai1-/- osteocytes; and defective osteogenic differentiation of Orai1-/- primary calvarial osteoblasts (pOBs), including a decrease in extracellular-secretion of type I collagen. An increase in the mesenchymal progenitor population of Orai1-/- bone marrow cells was indicated by a colony forming unit-fibroblasts (CFU-F) assay, and the increased proliferation of Orai1-/- pOBs was indicated by an MTT assay. Notably, Orai1 deficiency reduced the nuclear localization and transcription activity of the Nuclear Factor of Activated T-cell c1 (NFATc1), a calcium-regulated transcription factor, in pOBs. Altogether, our study demonstrated the crucial role of Orai1 in bone development and maintenance, via its diverse effects on osteoblast lineage cells from mesenchymal progenitors to osteocytes.
Project description:In men, androgens are critical for the acquisition and maintenance of bone mass in both the cortical and cancellous bone compartment. Male mice with targeted deletion of the androgen receptor (AR) in mature osteoblasts or osteocytes have lower cancellous bone mass, but no cortical bone phenotype. We have investigated the possibility that the effects of androgens on the cortical compartment result from AR signaling in osteoprogenitors or cells of the osteoclast lineage; or via estrogen receptor alpha (ER?) signaling in either or both of these two cell types upon conversion of testosterone to estradiol. To this end, we generated mice with targeted deletion of an AR or an ER? allele in the mesenchymal (AR(f/y);Prx1-Cre or ER?(f/f);Osx1-Cre) or myeloid cell lineage (AR(f/y);LysM-Cre or ER?(f/f);LysM-Cre) and their descendants. Male AR(f/y);Prx1-Cre mice exhibited decreased bone volume and trabecular number, and increased osteoclast number in the cancellous compartment. Moreover, they did not undergo the loss of cancellous bone volume and trabecular number caused by orchidectomy (ORX) in their littermate controls. In contrast, AR(f/y);LysM-Cre, ER?(f/f);Osx1-Cre, or ER?(f/f);LysM-Cre mice had no cancellous bone phenotype at baseline and lost the same amount of cancellous bone as their controls following ORX. Most unexpectedly, adult males of all four models had no discernible cortical bone phenotype at baseline, and lost the same amount of cortical bone as their littermate controls after ORX. Recapitulation of the effects of ORX by AR deletion only in the AR(f/y);Prx1-Cre mice indicates that the effects of androgens on cancellous bone result from AR signaling in osteoblasts-not on osteoclasts or via aromatization. The effects of androgens on cortical bone mass, on the other hand, do not require AR or ER? signaling in any cell type across the osteoblast or osteoclast differentiation lineage. Therefore, androgens must exert their effects indirectly by actions on some other cell type(s) or tissue(s).