Sappanone A inhibits RANKL-induced osteoclastogenesis in BMMs and prevents inflammation-mediated bone loss

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Receptor activator of nuclear factor-kB ligand (RANKL) is a key factor in the differentiation and activation of osteoclasts. Suppressing osteoclastogenesis is considered an effective therapeutic approach for bone-destructive diseases, such as osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis. Sappanone A (SPNA), a homoisoflavanone compound isolated from the heartwood of Caesalpinia sappan, has been reported to exert anti-inflammatory effects; however, the effects of SPNA on osteoclastogenesis have not been investigated. In the present study, we describe for the first time that SPNA inhibits RANKL-induced osteoclastogenesis in mouse bone marrow macrophages (BMMs) and suppresses inflammation-induced bone loss in a mouse model. SPNA inhibited the formation of osteoclasts from BMMs, osteoclast actin-ring formation, and bone resorption in a concentration-dependent manner. At the molecular level, SPNA significantly inhibited RANKL-induced activation of the AKT/glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) signaling pathway without affecting its activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) JNK, p38, and ERK. In addition, SPNA suppressed the induction of nuclear factor of activated T cells cytoplasmic 1 (NFATc1), which is a crucial transcription factor in osteoclast differentiation. As a result, SPNA decreased osteoclastogenesis-related marker gene expression, including CtsK, TRAP, dendritic cell-specific transmembrane protein (DC-STAMP), MMP-9 and osteoclast-associated receptor (OSCAR). In a mouse inflammatory bone loss model, SPNA significantly inhibited lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced bone loss by suppressing the number of osteoclasts. Taken together, these findings suggest that SPNA inhibits osteoclastogenesis and bone resorption by inhibiting the AKT/GSK-3β signaling pathway and may be a potential candidate compound for the prevention and/or treatment of inflammatory bone loss.

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