C-Abl-dependent molecular circuitry involving Smad5 and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase regulates bone morphogenetic protein-2-induced osteogenesis

Nandini Ghosh-Choudhury, Chandi C. Mandal, Falguni Das, Suthakar Ganapathy, Seema Ahuja, Goutam Ghosh Choudhury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: BMP-2-induced signal transduction requires receptor-specific Smads for osteogenesis. Results: c-Abl regulates BMP-2-induced canonical Smad and noncanonical PI 3-kinase in osteoblasts. Conclusion: BMP-2-stimulated c-Abl tyrosine kinase potentiates osteoblast and osteoclast differentiation. Significance: c-Abl is essential for bone remodeling. Skeletal remodeling consists of timely formation and resorption of bone by osteoblasts and osteoclasts in a quantitative manner. Patients with chronic myeloid leukemia receiving inhibitors of c-Abl tyrosine kinase often show reduced bone remodeling due to impaired osteoblast and osteoclast function. BMP-2 plays a significant role in bone generation and resorption by contributing to the formation of mature osteoblasts and osteoclasts. The effects of c-Abl on BMP-2-induced bone remodeling and the underlying mechanisms are not well studied. Using a pharmacological inhibitor and expression of a dominant negative mutant of c-Abl, we show an essential role of this tyrosine kinase in the development of bone nodules containing mature osteoblasts and formation of multinucleated osteoclasts in response to BMP-2. Calvarial osteoblasts prepared from c-Abl null mice showed the absolute requirement of this tyrosine kinase in maturation of osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase)/Akt signaling by BMP-2 leads to osteoblast differentiation. Remarkably, inhibition of c-Abl significantly suppressed BMP-2-stimulated PI 3-kinase activity and its downstream Akt phosphorylation. Interestingly, c-Abl regulated BMP-2-induced osteoclastogenic CSF-1 expression. More importantly, we identified the requirements of c-Abl in BMP-2 autoregulation and the expressions of alkaline phosphatase and osterix that are necessary for osteoblast differentiation. c-Abl contributed to BMP receptor-specific Smad-dependent transcription of CSF-1, osterix, and BMP-2. Finally, c-Abl associates with BMP receptor IA and regulates phosphorylation of Smad in response to BMP-2. We propose that activation of c-Abl is an important step, which induces into two signaling pathways involving noncanonical PI 3-kinase and canonical Smads to integrate BMP-2-induced osteogenesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24503-24517
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number34
StatePublished - Aug 23 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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