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Biochemistry - Physiology - Rheumatology - Women's Health

Control of Bone Resorption by Semaphorin 4D Is Dependent on Ovarian Function
Published: Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Author: Romain Dacquin et al.

by Romain Dacquin, Chantal Domenget, Atsushi Kumanogoh, Hitoshi Kikutani, Pierre Jurdic, Irma Machuca-Gayet

Osteoporosis is one of the most common bone pathologies, which are characterized by a decrease in bone mass. It is well established that bone mass, which results from a balanced bone formation and bone resorption, is regulated by many hormonal, environmental and genetic factors. Here we report that the immune semaphorin 4D (Sema4D) is a novel factor controlling bone resorption. Sema4D-deficient primary osteoclasts showed impaired spreading, adhesion, migration and resorption due to altered ß3 integrin sub-unit downstream signaling. In apparent accordance with these in vitro results, Sema4D deletion in sexually mature female mice led to a high bone mass phenotype due to defective bone resorption by osteoclasts. Mutant males, however, displayed normal bone mass and the female osteopetrotic phenotype was only detected at the onset of sexual maturity, indicating that, in vivo, this intrinsic osteoclast defect might be overcome in these mice. Using bone marrow cross transplantation, we confirmed that Sema4D controls bone resorption through an indirect mechanism. In addition, we show that Sema4D -/- mice were less fertile than their WT littermates. A decrease in Gnrh1 hypothalamic expression and a reduced number of ovarian follicles can explain this attenuated fertility. Interestingly, ovariectomy abrogated the bone resorption phenotype in Sema4D -/- mice, providing the evidence that the observed high bone mass phenotype is strictly dependent on ovarian function. Altogether, this study reveals that, in vivo, Sema4D is an indirect regulator of bone resorption, which acts via its effect on reproductive function.