Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), also known as von Recklinghausen disease, is a common autosomal dominant genetic disorder affecting approximately 1 in 3000 individuals worldwide. NF1 results from heritable or spontaneous mutations of the NF1 tumor suppressor gene. NF1 encodes the protein neurofibromin, which functions to negatively regulate Ras-activity. Approximately 50 % of NF1 patients develop osteopenia or osteoporosis, resulting in significantly increased rates of long-bone fracture and morbidity. While defective osteoblast bone anabolism has been implicated as a central factor in the pathogenesis of NF1 associated skeletal deficits, recent data suggest that NF1 (Nf1) haploinsufficiency within the hematopoietic compartment, particularly in osteoclasts and myeloid progenitors, plays a pivotal role in engendering NF1 osseous manifestations. In this chapter, we review the latest data from clinical studies and murine models delineating a critical role for hematopoietic compartment, myeloid progenitors of NF1 (Nf1) haploinsufficient and their progeny-osteoclasts, in the pathogenesis of NF1 associated osteopenia/osteoporosis and discuss putative targets for future therapeutics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism