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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005 Sep 27;102(39):14016-21. Epub 2005 Sep 19.

VEGF receptor 1 signaling is essential for osteoclast development and bone marrow formation in colony-stimulating factor 1-deficient mice.

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  • 1Department of Bone and Joint Disease, Research Institute, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, Aichi 474-8522, Japan.


VEGF receptor 1 (VEGFR-1/Flt-1) is a high-affinity tyrosine kinase (TK) receptor for VEGF and regulates angiogenesis as well as monocyte/macrophage functions. We previously showed that the osteoclast deficiency in osteopetrotic Csf1op/Csf1op (op/op) mice is gradually restored in an endogenous, VEGF-dependent manner. However, the molecular basis of the recovery is still not clear. To examine which VEGFR is important and to clarify how colony-stimulating factor 1 (CSF-1) and VEGF signals interact in osteoclastogenesis, we introduced a VEGFR-1 signaling deficiency (Flt1(TK)-/-) into op/op mice. The original Flt1(TK)-/- mice showed mild osteoclast reduction without bone marrow suppression. The double mutant (op/opFlt1(TK)-/-) mice, however, exhibited very severe osteoclast deficiency and did not have numbers of osteoclasts sufficient to form the bone marrow cavity. The narrow bone marrow cavity in the op/opFlt1(TK)-/- mice was gradually replaced with fibrous tissue, resulting in severe marrow hypoplasia and extramedullary hematopoiesis. In addition to osteoclasts, osteoblasts also decreased in number in the op/opFlt1(TK)-/- mice. These results strongly suggest that the interaction of signals by means of VEGFR-1 and the CSF-1 receptor plays a predominant role not only in osteoclastogenesis but also in the maintenance of bone marrow functions.

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