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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2000 Apr;55(4):B194-200.

CBFA1 and topoisomerase I mRNA levels decline during cellular aging of human trabecular osteoblasts.

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  • 1Danish Centre for Molecular Gerontology, Department of Molecular and Structural Biology, University of Aarhus, Denmark.


In order to understand the reasons for age-related impairment of the function of bone forming osteoblasts, we have examined the steady-state mRNA levels of the transcription factor CBFA1 and topoisomerase I during cellular aging of normal human trabecular osteoblasts, by the use of semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). There is a progressive and significant reduction of the CBFA1 steady-state mRNA level down to 50% during cellular aging of human osteoblasts. In comparison to the normal cells, human osteosarcoma cell lines SaOS-2 and KHOS/NP, and the SV40-transformed human lung fibroblast cell line MRC5V2 have 20 to 40% higher levels of CBFA1 mRNA. Similar levels of CBFA1 mRNA are detectable in normal human skin fibroblasts, and these cells also exhibit an age-related decline to the same extent. In addition, the expression of topoisomerase I is reduced by 40% in senescent osteoblasts, and the mRNA levels are significantly higher (40-70%) in transformed osteoblasts and fibroblasts. These changes in gene expression may be among the causes of impaired osteoblast functions, resulting in reduced bone formation during aging.

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