The BMP2 variant L51P restores the osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stromal cells in the presence of intervertebral disc cells.

Tekari, Adel; May, R D; Frauchiger, Daniela Angelika; Chan, S C; Benneker, Lorin Michael; Gantenbein, Benjamin (2017). The BMP2 variant L51P restores the osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stromal cells in the presence of intervertebral disc cells. European cells & materials eCM, 33, pp. 197-210. University of Wales 10.22203/eCM.v033a15

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Spinal fusion is hampered by the presence of remaining intervertebral disc (IVD) tissue and leads to spinal non-union. While the exact mechanism remains unknown, we hypothesise that factors preventing disc ossification, such as antagonists of the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP), could be responsible for this process. The objective of this study was to investigate spinal non-union using an in vitro human model with a focus on the BMP signalling components and to identify factors contributing to the incomplete and delayed ossification. Human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) were cocultured with IVD cells in the presence of L51P, a BMP2 variant with osteoinductive potential. The ossification of MSC was evaluated by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and alizarin red staining. Endogenous expression of major BMP antagonists, namely Gremlin (GREM1), Noggin (NOG) and Chordin (CHRD) was detected in IVD-derived cells, with abundance in nucleus pulposus cells. Osteogenesis of MSC was hindered by IVD cells as shown by reduced alizarin red staining, ALP activity and qPCR. L51P, added to the cocultures, restored mineralisation, blocking the activity of the BMP antagonists secreted by IVD cells. It is possible that the BMP antagonists secreted by IVD cells are responsible for spinal non-unions. The inhibition of BMP antagonists with L51P may result in an efficient and more physiological osteoinduction rather than delivery of exogenous osteogenic factors. Therefore, L51P might represent an attractive therapeutic candidate for bone healing.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute for Surgical Technology & Biomechanics ISTB [discontinued]
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Orthopaedic, Plastic and Hand Surgery (DOPH) > Clinic of Orthopaedic Surgery

UniBE Contributor:

Tekari, Adel, Frauchiger, Daniela Angelika, Benneker, Lorin Michael, Gantenbein, Benjamin


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




University of Wales




Benjamin Gantenbein

Date Deposited:

14 Jul 2017 14:56

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:03

Publisher DOI:


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