Osteogenic and osteoclastic cell interaction: Development of a co-culture system

Peter M. Loomer, Richard P. Ellen, Howard C. Tenenbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


The processes involved in the regulation of bone cell metabolism are complex, including those implicated in bone cell coupling. This study was undertaken to develop a model that would permit real-time interaction between osteoclastic cells and osteoblasts in vitro. Osteogenic bone marrow stromal cells were isolated from 18-day-old embryonic chickens, while osteoclastic cells were isolated from laying White Leghorn hens on calcium-deficient diets. Osteoclastic cells (5 x 105) were seeded onto mineral thin films and suspended above osteogenic cells (1 x 104) already plated on the bottoms of tissue culture plate wells. The data showed that after 4 days of incubation there was up to a fivefold (P < 0.05) reduction in all measured parameters of osteogenesis (mineralization, alkaline phosphatase activity and type I collagen production) in osteogenic cultures grown in the presence of osteoclastic cells. Similarly, osteoclastic cell-induced mineral resorption was reduced up to threefold (P < 0.05). Co-culture effects on cellular responses could be manipulated by known antiresorptive agents (e.g., pamidronate) altering either the source or the age of osteoclastic cells. The results indicate that the co-culture model may be useful in the study of bone cell interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-108
Number of pages10
JournalCell and Tissue Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 8 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomaterials
  • Bone formation
  • Chicken (culture)
  • Mineral resorption
  • Osteoblasts
  • Osteoclasts
  • Stromal cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Histology
  • Cell Biology

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