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J Cell Biochem. 2010 Mar 1;109(4):794-800. doi: 10.1002/jcb.22471.

LPA induces osteoblast differentiation through interplay of two receptors: LPA1 and LPA4.

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  • 1Tissue Repair, Pfizer, Inc., Collegeville, Pennsylvania 19426, USA.


The bioactive phospholipid, lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), acting through at least five distinct receptors LPA1-LPA5, plays important roles in numerous biological processes. Here we report that LPA induces osteoblastic differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells hMSC-TERT. We find that hMSC-TERT mostly express two LPA receptors, LPA1 and LPA4, and undergo osteoblastic differentiation in serum-containing medium. Inhibition of LPA1 with Ki16425 completely abrogates osteogenesis, indicating that this process is mediated by LPA in the serum through activation of LPA1. In contrast to LPA1, down-regulation of LPA4 expression with shRNA significantly increases osteogenesis, suggesting that this receptor normally exerts negative effects on differentiation. Mechanistically, we find that in hMSC-TERT, LPA induces a rise in both cAMP and Ca(2+). The rise in Ca(2+) is completely abolished by Ki16425, whereas LPA-mediated cAMP increase is not sensitive to Ki16425. To test if LPA signaling pathways controlling osteogenesis in vitro translate into animal physiology, we evaluated the bones of LPA4-deficient mice. Consistent with the ability of LPA4 to inhibit osteoblastic differentiation of stem cells, LPA4-deficient mice have increased trabecular bone volume, number, and thickness.

(c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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