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J Bone Miner Res. 2004 Feb;19(2):224-34. Epub 2003 Dec 16.

The signaling adapter protein DAP12 regulates multinucleation during osteoclast development.

Author information

  • 1Department of Medicine, VA Medical Center and University of California, San Francisco, California 94121, USA. mbh@itsa.ucsf.edu

Abstract

Deficiency of the signaling adapter protein DAP12 is associated with bony abnormalities in both mice and humans. We identify specific DAP12-associated receptors expressed by osteoclasts and examine function of DAP12 in murine osteoclasts in vivo and in vitro. These data show a new role for DAP12 signaling in regulating formation of multinucleated osteoclasts.

INTRODUCTION:

Osteoclasts are bone-resorbing cells derived from hematopoietic precursors in the myeloid lineage. In other myeloid cell types, the signaling adapter protein DAP12 transmits activating signals on ligation of a DAP12-associated receptor (DAR). The aim of this study was to clarify the role of DAP12 signaling during osteoclast development.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Osteoclasts from DAP12 -/- or control mice were analyzed in vitro for morphology, function, and for osteoclast markers. DARs were identified in osteoclast cultures through reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Bone density of DAP12 -/- and control mice were analyzed by microcomputed tomography. DAP12 -/- osteoclasts were retrovirally reconstituted with DAP12. RAW264.7 cells were transfected with FLAG-tagged DAP12 or TREM2 and stimulated by anti-FLAG antibody during in vitro osteoclastogenesis.

RESULTS:

C57BL/6 DAP12-deficient mice have higher bone mass than C57BL/6 wildtype controls. We verified the presence of DAP12 in pre-osteoclasts and osteoclasts derived from C57BL/6 or the pre-osteoclast line RAW 264.7 and identified the DARs expressed. DAP12 -/- osteoclasts developed in vitro with macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF) and RANKL formed only intensely TRACP+ mononuclear cells and failed to generate multinuclear osteoclasts. These mononuclear cells are functional osteoclast-like cells because, by RT-PCR, they express other osteoclast markers and generate resorption pits on dentine slices, although quantitative assessment of bone resorption shows decreased resorption by DAP12 -/- osteoclasts compared with C57BL/6 osteoclasts. Restoration of DAP12 expression by retroviral transduction of DAP12 -/- osteoclast precursors rescued in vitro osteoclast multinucleation. Direct stimulation of DAP12 expressed in RAW264.7 during in vitro osteoclastogenesis led to a marked increase in the number of TRACP+ multinucleated osteoclast-like cells formed.

CONCLUSION:

Our studies indicate that stimulation of the DAP12 adapter protein plays a significant role in formation of multinuclear osteoclasts and that DAP12 and DARs likely participate in the regulation of bony remodeling.

PMID:
14969392
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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