Journal of the Korean Academy of Pediatric Dentistry 1999;26(4):652-663.
Published online November 30, 1999.
THE EFFECT OF FGF-MEDIATED FGFR SIGNALING ON THE EARLY MORPHOGENESIS AND MAINTENANCE OF THE CRANIAL SUTURE
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Abstract
Craniosynostosis, the premature fusion of cranial sutures, presumably involves disturbance of the interactions between different tissues within the cranial sutures. Interestingly, point mutaions in the genes encoding for the fibroblast growth factor receptors(FGFRs), especially FGFR2, cause various types of human craniosynostosis syndromes. To elucidate the function of these genes in the early morphogenesis of mouse cranial sutures, we first analyzed by in situ hybridization the expression of FGFR2(BEK) and osteopontin, an early marker of osteogenic differentiation, in the sagittal suture of calvaria during embryonic(E15-E18) and postnatal stage(P1-P3). FGFR2(BEK) was intensely expressed in the osteogenic fronts, whose cells undergo differentiation into osteoprogenitor cells that ultimately lay down the bone matrix. Osteopontin was expressed throughout the parietal bones excluding the osteogenic fronts, the periphery of the parietal bones. To further examine the role of FGF-mediated FGFR signaling in cranial suture, we did in vitro experiments in E15.5 mouse calvarial explants. Interestingly, implantation of FGF2 soaked beads onto both the osteogenic fronts and mid-mesenchyme of sagittal suture after 36 hours organ culture resulted in the increase of the tissue thickness and cell number around FGF2 beads, moreover FGF4-soaked beads implanted onto the osteogenic fronts stimulated suture closure due to an accelerated bone growth, compared to FGF4 beads placed onto mid-mesenchyme of sagittal suture and BSA control beads. In addition FGF2 induced the ectopic expression of osteopontin and Msx1 genes. Taken together, these data indicate that FGF-mediated FGFR signaling has a important role in regulating the cranial bone growth and maintenance of cranial suture, and suggest that FGF-mediated FGFR signaling is involved in regulating the balance between the cell proliferation and differentiation through inducing the expression of osteopontin and Msx1 genes.
Key Words: Cranial suture, FGF2, FGFR2, FGF signaling, Intramembranous bone, Osteopontin


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