Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
PLoS One. 2012;7(7):e42005. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0042005. Epub 2012 Jul 31.

Cathepsin K-Cre causes unexpected germline deletion of genes in mice.

Author information

  • 1BRIGHT Institute and Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Molecular Oncology, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, Missouri, United States of America.


Osteoclasts are terminally differentiated cells that attach to bone and secrete proteases to degrade the bone matrix. The primary protease responsible for the degradation of the organic component of the bone matrix is Cathepsin K, which was largely thought to be unique to osteoclasts. Given its apparent selective expression in osteoclasts, the Cathepsin K promoter has been engineered to drive the expression of Cre recombinase in mice and has been the most relevant tool for generating osteoclast-specific gene loss. In an effort to understand the role of the ARF tumor suppressor in osteoclasts, we crossed Arf (fl/fl) mice to Ctsk(Cre/+) mice, which unexpectedly resulted in the germline loss of Arf. We subsequently confirmed Cre activity in gametes by generating Ctsk(Cre/+); Rosa(+) mice. These results raise significant concerns regarding in vivo bone phenotypes created using Ctsk(Cre/+) mice and warrant further investigation into the role of Cathepsin K in gametes as well as alternative tools for studying osteoclast-specific gene loss in vivo.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Public Library of Science Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center