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J Bone Miner Res. 2008 Feb;23(2):287-95. doi: 10.1359/jbmr.071011.

Osteogenic differentiation of human adipose tissue-derived stem cells is modulated by the miR-26a targeting of the SMAD1 transcription factor.

Author information

1
Metabolic Bone Unit, Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Florence, Florence, Italy.

Abstract

The molecular mechanisms that regulate hADSC differentiation toward osteogenic precursors and subsequent bone-forming osteoblasts is unknown. Using osteoblast precursors obtained from subcutaneous human adipose tissue, we observed that microRNA-26a modulated late osteoblasts differentiation by targeting the SMAD1 transcription factor.

INTRODUCTION:

Elucidation of the molecular mechanisms guiding human adipose tissue-derived stem cells (hADSCs) differentiation is of extreme importance for improving the treatment of bone-related diseases such as osteoporosis. The aim of this study was to identify microRNA as a regulator of the osteogenic differentiation of hADSCs.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Osteoblast differentiation of hADSCs was induced by treatment with dexamethasone, ascorbic acid, and beta-glycerol phosphate. The expression of osteoblastic phenotype was evaluated after the induction by simultaneous monitoring of alkaline phosphatase activity, the expression of genes involved in osteoblastic differentiation by real-time RT-PCR, and mineralization at the same time. MicroRNA expression was determined by Northern blot, and transfection of both antisense miR-RNA and sensor plasmids was done to validate the inhibitory role of microRNA during hADSC osteogenesis. Western blot was used to determine the expression levels of the SMAD1 protein. qRT-PCR analysis was used to compare the expression patterns of osteoblastic markers in transfected cells.

RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS:

We analyzed the role of microRNA 26a (miR-26a) during differentiation of hADSCs. Northern blot analysis of miR-26a during hADSC differentiation showed increased expression, whereas expression of the SMAD1 protein was complementary to that of miR-26a. Because the highest expression of miR-26a and the lowest expression of SMAD1 protein were reached at hADSC terminal differentiation, we carried out our study during the late stages of hADSC differentiation. The inhibition of miR-26a, by 2'-O-methyl-antisense RNA, increased protein levels of its predicted target, SMAD1 transcription factor, in treated osteoblasts, upregulating bone marker genes and thus enhancing osteoblast differentiation. Our data suggest a role for miR-26a in the differentiation induced by treatment with dexamethasone, ascorbic acid, and beta-glycerol phosphate of hADSCs toward the osteogenic lineage by targeting its predicted target, the SMAD1 protein. This study contributes to a better knowledge of molecular mechanisms governing hADSC differentiation by proposing a microRNA-based control of late differentiation.

PMID:
18197755
DOI:
10.1359/jbmr.071011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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