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J Bone Miner Res. 2001 Jul;16(7):1265-71.

Targeted disruption of cadherin-11 leads to a reduction in bone density in calvaria and long bone metaphyses.

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Department of Life Science, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Yokohama, Japan.


The migration and adhesion of osteoblasts requires several classical cadherins. Cadherin-11, one of the classical cadherins, was expressed in mouse osteoblasts in skull bone and femur, revealed by immunohistochemistry. To elucidate the function of cadherin-11 in osteoblastogenesis, cadherin-11 null mutant mice were investigated. Although apparently normal at birth, Alizarin red staining of null mutant mice showed a reduced calcified area at the frontal suture that caused a round-shaped calvaria with increasing animal age to 3 months. Consequently, there was a reduction in bone density at the femoral metaphyses and the diploƫ of calvaria in null mutant mice. In the in vitro culture of newborn calvarial cells, the calcified area of mutant cells was smaller than those derived from wild-type littermates. These results show that absence of cadherin-11 leads to reduced bone density in some parts of skeletons including calvaria and long bone metaphyses, and thus suggest that cadherin-11 plays roles in the regulation of osteoblast differentiation and in the mineralization of the osteoid matrix.

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