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PLoS Genet. 2017 Apr 26;13(4):e1006742. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1006742. eCollection 2017 Apr.

Unsuspected osteochondroma-like outgrowths in the cranial base of Hereditary Multiple Exostoses patients and modeling and treatment with a BMP antagonist in mice.

Author information

1
Translational Research Program in Pediatric Orthopaedics, Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America.
2
Shriner's Hospital for Children, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America.
3
Department of Orthopaedics, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America.
4
Department of Oncological Sciences and Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America.

Abstract

Hereditary Multiple Exostoses (HME) is a rare pediatric disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in the genes encoding the heparan sulfate (HS)-synthesizing enzymes EXT1 or EXT2. HME is characterized by formation of cartilaginous outgrowths-called osteochondromas- next to the growth plates of many axial and appendicular skeletal elements. Surprisingly, it is not known whether such tumors also form in endochondral elements of the craniofacial skeleton. Here, we carried out a retrospective analysis of cervical spine MRI and CT scans from 50 consecutive HME patients that included cranial skeletal images. Interestingly, nearly half of the patients displayed moderate defects or osteochondroma-like outgrowths in the cranial base and specifically in the clivus. In good correlation, osteochondromas developed in the cranial base of mutant Ext1f/f;Col2-CreER or Ext1f/f;Aggrecan-CreER mouse models of HME along the synchondrosis growth plates. Osteochondroma formation was preceded by phenotypic alteration of cells at the chondro-perichondrial boundary and was accompanied by ectopic expression of major cartilage matrix genes -collagen 2 and collagen X- within the growing ectopic masses. Because chondrogenesis requires bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling, we asked whether osteochondroma formation could be blocked by a BMP signaling antagonist. Systemic administration with LDN-193189 effectively inhibited osteochondroma growth in conditional Ext1-mutant mice. In vitro studies with mouse embryo chondrogenic cells clarified the mechanisms of LDN-193189 action that turned out to include decreases in canonical BMP signaling pSMAD1/5/8 effectors but interestingly, concurrent increases in such anti-chondrogenic mechanisms as pERK1/2 and Chordin, Fgf9 and Fgf18 expression. Our study is the first to reveal that the cranial base can be affected in patients with HME and that osteochondroma formation is amenable to therapeutic drug intervention.

PMID:
28445472
PMCID:
PMC5425227
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pgen.1006742
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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