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Immunobiology. 2013 Jan;218(1):1-9. doi: 10.1016/j.imbio.2012.01.020. Epub 2012 Feb 2.

Does complement play a role in bone development and regeneration?

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Institute of Orthopaedic Research and Biomechanics, Centre of Muskuloskelettal Research, University of Ulm, Helmholtzstrasse 14, 89081 Ulm, Germany.


The skeletal and the immune system are not two independent systems, rather, there are multifaceted and complex interactions between the different cell types of both systems and there are several shared cytokines. As a part of the innate immunity, the complement system was found to be an important link between bone and immunity. Complement proteins appear to be involved in bone development and homeostasis, and specifically influence osteoblast and osteoclast activity. This review describes the complex mutual regulation of the two systems, and indicates some of the negative side effects as a result of inappropriate or excessive complement activation.

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