Murine spleen cells produce mature osteoclasts when cocultured with osteoblastic cells. Colony-stimulating factor (CSF)-1 is the growth factor required for differentiating the monocyte-macrophage precursor cells into preosteoclasts. Bone morphogenic protein (BMP) signaling in osteoblasts regulates bone mass in mice, suggesting a role of BMP in osteoclastogenesis along with osteoblast activity. The intracellular signal transduction cross talk regulating the osteoblastic production of CSF-1 as a mechanism of BMP-induced osteoclastogenesis is described in this report. We have recently described the involvement of Smad 1/5 in BMP-2-induced CSF-1 expression and osteoclast formation. In this study, using the pharmacological inhibitors and the adenovirus (Ad) vectors expressing dominant-negative (DN) phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K), the PI3K-signaling inhibitor, phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted in chromosome 10 (PTEN) or DN Akt kinase in the in vitro coculture assay,weshowan essential role of the lipid kinase cascade in BMP-2-mediated multinucleated osteoclast formation and CSF-1 mRNA expression, transcription, and secretion. Inhibition of PI3K/Akt signaling blocked the binding of Smads 1/5 to the CSF-1 BMP-responsive element present in the CSF-1 promoter, resulting in attenuation of Smad-dependent CSF-1 transcription. Furthermore, PI3K inhibition and DN Akt prevented association of the transcriptional coactivator, CREB (cAMP response element binding protein) binding protein (CBP), with Smads 1/5. Together, these data for the first time demonstrate that PI3K-dependent Akt activation regulates BMP-2-induced CSF-1 expression and provides a mechanism for osteoblastic cell-assisted osteoclast differentiation.
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