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J Cell Physiol. 2018 Feb;233(2):1481-1489. doi: 10.1002/jcp.26035. Epub 2017 Jul 4.

G protein-coupled receptor 84 controls osteoclastogenesis through inhibition of NF-κB and MAPK signaling pathways.

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Department of Biomedical Science, Cell and Matrix Research Institute, BK21 Plus KNU Biomedical Convergence Program, Clinical Trial Center, School of Medicine, Kyungpook National University and Hospital, Daegu, Republic of Korea.


GPR84, a member of the G protein-coupled receptor family, is found predominantly in immune cells, such as macrophages, and functions as a pivotal modulator of inflammatory responses. In this study, we investigated the role of GPR84 in receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANKL)-induced osteoclast differentiation. Our microarray data showed that GPR84 was significantly downregulated in osteoclasts compared to in their precursors, macrophages. The overexpression of GPR84 in bone marrow-derived macrophages suppressed the formation of multinucleated osteoclasts without affecting precursor proliferation. In addition, GPR84 overexpression attenuated the induction of c-Fos and nuclear factor of activated T cells, cytoplasmic 1 (NFATc1), which are transcription factors that are critical for osteoclastogenesis. Furthermore, knockdown of GPR84 using a small hairpin RNA promoted RANKL-mediated osteoclast differentiation and gene expression of osteoclastogenic markers. Mechanistically, GPR84 overexpression blocked RANKL-stimulated phosphorylation of IκBα and three MAPKs, JNK, ERK, and p38. GPR84 also suppressed NF-κB transcriptional activity mediated by RANKL. Conversely, GPR84 knockdown enhanced RANKL-induced activation of IκBα and the three MAPKs. Collectively, our results revealed that GPR84 functions as a negative regulator of osteoclastogenesis, suggesting that it may be a potential therapeutic target for osteoclast-mediated bone-destructive diseases.


GPR84; NF-κB; NFATc1; c-Fos; osteoclastogenesis

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