Concerted stimuli regulating osteo-chondral differentiation from stem cells: phenotype acquisition regulated by microRNAs

Jan O Gordeladze, Farida Djouad, Jean-Marc Brondello, Daniele Noël, Isabelle Duroux-Richard, Florence Apparailly, Christian Jorgensen
DOI: 10.1038/aps.2009.143


Bone and cartilage are being generated de novo through concerted actions of a plethora of signals. These act on stem cells (SCs) recruited for lineage-specific differentiation, with cellular phenotypes representing various functions throughout their life span. The signals are rendered by hormones and growth factors (GFs) and mechanical forces ensuring proper modelling and remodelling of bone and cartilage, due to indigenous and programmed metabolism in SCs, osteoblasts, chondrocytes, as well as osteoclasts and other cell types (eg T helper cells).

This review focuses on the concerted action of such signals, as well as the regulatory and/or stabilizing control circuits rendered by a class of small RNAs, designated microRNAs. The impact on cell functions evoked by transcription factors (TFs) via various signalling molecules, also encompassing mechanical stimulation, will be discussed featuring microRNAs as important members of an integrative system. The present approach to cell differentiation in vitro may vastly influence cell engineering for in vivo tissue repair.

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