Bajijiasu abrogates osteoclast differentiation via the suppression of RANKL signaling pathways through NF-κB and NFAT

Guoju Hong, Lin Zhou, Xuguang Shi, Wei He, Haibin Wang, Qiushi Wei, Peng Chen, Longkai Qi, Jennifer Tickner, Li Lin, Jiake Xu

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    16 Citations (Scopus)


    Pathological osteolysis is commonly associated with osteoporosis, bone tumors, osteonecrosis, and chronic inflammation. It involves excessive resorption of bone matrix by activated osteoclasts. Suppressing receptor activator of NF-κB ligand (RANKL) signaling pathways has been proposed to be a good target for inhibiting osteoclast differentiation and bone resorption. Bajijiasu—a natural compound derived from Morinda officinalis F. C. How—has previously been shown to have anti-oxidative stress property; however, its effect and molecular mechanism of action on osteoclastogenesis and bone resorption remains unclear. In the present study, we found that Bajijiasu dose-dependently inhibited RANKL-induced osteoclast formation and bone resorption from 0.1 mM, and reached half maximal inhibitory effects (IC50) at 0.4 mM without toxicity. Expression of RANKL-induced osteoclast specific marker genes including cathepsin K (Ctsk), nuclear factor of activated T-cells cytoplasmic 1 (NFATc1), tartrate resistant acid phosphatase (TRAcP), vacuolar-type H+-ATPase V0 subunit D2 (V-ATPase d2), and (matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP2) was inhibited by Bajijiasu treatment. Luciferase reporter gene studies showed that Bajijiasu could significantly reduce the expression and transcriptional activity of NFAT as well as RANKL-induced NF-κB activation in a dose-dependent manner. Further, Bajijiasu was found to decrease the RANKL-induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK), inhibitor of κB-α (IκB-α), NFAT, and V-ATPase d2. Taken together, this study revealed Bajijiasu could attenuate osteoclast formation and bone resorption by mediating RANKL signaling pathways, indicative of a potential effect of Bajijiasu on osteolytic bone diseases.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number203
    Number of pages12
    JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2017

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