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Biogerontology. 2003;4(5):309-17.

Age-associated changes in functional response to CXCR3 and CXCR5 chemokine receptors in human osteoblasts.

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Laboratorio di Immunologia e Genetica, Istituti Ortopedici Rizzoli, via di Barbiano 1/10, 40136 Bologna, Italy.


The expression and functional activity of CXC chemokine receptors were evaluated in human osteoblasts (OB) obtained post-trauma from old donors compared to very young donors. It was found that CXCR1 and CXCR4 were only expressed by old but not young donors' cells. In contrast, CXCR3 and CXCR5 were expressed by both young and old donors. We functionally evaluated CXCR3/CXCL10 and CXCR5/CXCL13 receptor/ligand pairs by analysing cell proliferation and the release of N-acetyl-beta-D-glucosaminidase (NAG), an enzyme that degrades glycosaminoglycans and hyaluronic acid. CXCL10 and CXCL13 induced a dose-dependent increase of cell proliferation in OB from young donors while cell proliferation of OB in old donors was not affected. By contrast, CXCL10 and CXCL13 induced a significantly higher NAG release in OB from old donors compared to young ones. These data demonstrate a significant age-dependent difference in the response of OB to CXCL10 and CXCL13 stimulation. These chemokines induce an inverse response of OB from old and young donors, which suggests a role of ageing in the modulation of cellular response of bone cells.

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