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Folia Histochem Cytobiol. 2011;49(4):558-69.

Bone as a source of organism vitality and regeneration.

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State Research Institute Center for Innovative Medicine, Vilnius, Lithuania.


The most important features that determine the vital role of bone include: a) a continuous supply of calcium, which is indispensible for every cell of the entire organism at all times, and b) the delivery of circulating blood cells and some adult stem cells to keep the body vigorous, ready for self-reparation, and continuously rebuilding throughout life. These functions of bones are no less important than protecting the body cavities, serving as mechanical levers connected to the muscles, and determining the shape and dimensions of the entire organism. The aim of this review was to address some basic cellular and molecular knowledge to better understand the complex interactions of bone structural components. The apprehension of osteoblast differentiation and its local regulation has substantially increased in recent years. It has been suggested that osteocytes, cells within the bone matrix, act as regulatory mechanosensors. Therefore immobility as well as limited activity has a dramatic effect on bone structure and influences a broad spectrum of bone physiology-related functions as well as the functions of many other organs. Lifelong bone rebuilding is modulated through several pathways, including the Wnt pathway that regulates bone formation and resorption. In the adult skeleton, bone is continuously renewed in response to a variety of stimuli, such as the specific process of remodeling dependent on RANK/ /RANKL/OPG interactions. Better understanding of bone biology provides opportunities for the development of more effective prevention and treatment modalities for a variety of bone diseases, including new approaches to adult stem cell-based therapies.

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