Full-Length Bovine spp24 [spp24 (24-203)] Inhibits BMP-2 Induced Bone Formation

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Secreted phosphoprotein 24 kDa (spp24) is a bone matrix protein. It contains a TGF-β receptor II homology 1 (TRH1) domain. A cyclic, synthetic 19 amino acid peptide (bone morphogenetic protein binding peptide or BBP) based on the sequence of the TRH1 domain enhances BMP-2 induced osteogenesis. Many observations suggest that different size forms of this protein have very different effects (inhibiting or enhancing) on BMP-2 induced osteogenesis. Using the stable recombinant Met(His)6-tagged secretory form of full-length (fl) bovine spp24 [Met(His)6-spp24 (residues 24-203)] and transgenic (TG) mice expressing fl bovine spp24 (residues 1-203), we have demonstrated that spp24 inhibits BMP-2 induced bone formation. The effects of Met(His)6-spp24 (24-203) were determined in the ectopic bone-forming bioassay in male mice. Implantation of 5 μg of BMP-2 stimulated bone formation, assessed densitometrically as bone area and mineral content. When Met(His)6-spp24 (24-203) was implanted with BMP-2, it elicited a dose-dependent decrease in BMP-2-medicated ectopic bone formation. When added at a 50-fold excess (w/w), Met(His)6-spp24 (24-203) completely ablated the effects of BMP-2, while addition of a 10-fold excess had no effect. Constitutive expression of fl bovine spp24 (1-203) under the control of the osteocalcin promoter in TG female mice reduced femoral and vertebral bone mineral density at 3 months of age and reduced femoral BMD at 8 months of age, but had no effects in male mice, which can exhibit less osteocalcin-promoter driven gene transcription than females. Histomorphometric analysis demonstrated that bone volume and trabecular thickness were lower in TG female mice at 3 months of age than in sex- and age-matched wild type (WT) controls. Thus, fl spp24 and its secretory isoform (Met(His)6-spp24 [24-203]), which contain a BMP-binding or TRH1 motif, inhibit ectopic bone formation in male mice and adversely affects BMD and histological parameters related to bone mass and formation in female mice expressing the human transgene. Under these conditions, fl spp24 acts as a BMP antagonist in vivo. © 2008 Orthopaedic Research Society.* Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 26:753-758, 2008

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