The directionality of matrix deposition in vivo is governed by the ability of a cell to direct vesicularflow to a specific target site. Osteoblastic cells direct newly synthesized bone matrix proteins toward the bone surface. In this study, we dissect the molecular mechanisms underlying the polarized trafficking of matrix protein in osteoblasts. We demonstrate using TEM, immunocytochemistry, and cDNA analysis, the ability of osteoblastic cells in culture to form tight junction-like structures and report the expression of the tight junction associated proteins occludin and claudins 1-3 in these cells. We identify intercellular contact sites and the leading edge of migratory osteoblasts as major target sites of vesicular trafficking in osteoblasts. Proteins required for this process, rsec6, NSF, VAMP1, and syntaxin 4, as well as the bone matrix protein, osteopontin, localize to these sites. We demonstrate that osteoblasts in vivo possess VAMP1 and, furthermore, report the expression of two VAMP1 splice variants in these cells. In addition, osteoblasts express the NSF attachment protein alpha-SNAP and the t-SNARE SNAP23. Thus, cell-to-cell contact sites and the leading edge of migratory osteoblasts contain a unique complement of proteins required for SNARE mediated membrane fusion.
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||Experimental Cell Research|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2003|