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J Biol Chem. 2011 Aug 5;286(31):27630-8. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.243113. Epub 2011 Jun 10.

Control of megakaryocyte expansion and bone marrow fibrosis by lysyl oxidase.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts 02118, USA.


Lysyl oxidase (LOX), a matrix cross-linking protein, is known to be selectively expressed and to enhance a fibrotic phenotype. A recent study of ours showed that LOX oxidizes the PDGF receptor-β (PDGFR-β), leading to amplified downstream signaling. Here, we examined the expression and functions of LOX in megakaryocytes (MKs), the platelet precursors. Cells committed to the MK lineage undergo mitotic proliferation to yield diploid cells, followed by endomitosis and acquisition of polyploidy. Intriguingly, LOX expression is detected in diploid-tetraploid MKs, but scarce in polyploid MKs. PDGFR-BB is an inducer of mitotic proliferation in MKs. LOX inhibition with β-aminopropionitrile reduces PDGFR-BB binding to cells and downstream signaling, as well as its proliferative effect on the MK lineage. Inhibition of LOX activity has no influence on MK polyploidy. We next rationalized that, in a system with an abundance of low ploidy MKs, LOX could be highly expressed and with functional significance. Thus, we resorted to GATA-1(low) mice, where there is an increase in low ploidy MKs, augmented levels of PDGF-BB, and an extensive matrix of fibers. MKs from these mice display high expression of LOX, compared with control mice. Importantly, treatment of GATA-1(low) mice with β-aminopropionitrile significantly improves the bone marrow fibrotic phenotype, and MK number in the spleen. Thus, our in vitro and in vivo data support a novel role for LOX in regulating MK expansion by PDGF-BB and suggest LOX as a new potential therapeutic target for myelofibrosis.

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