Sep 27, 2018

Switching Off ALPL Gene Contributes to Bone Aging

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics, life extension

A recent open-access mouse study published by Xi’an Institute of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine scientists in the journal Bone Research describes how the ALPL gene affects bone aging and suggests that metformin might constitute a viable therapeutic option to prevent it [1].

Study abstract

Mutations in the liver/bone/kidney alkaline phosphatase (Alpl) gene cause hypophosphatasia (HPP) and early-onset bone dysplasia, suggesting that this gene is a key factor in human bone development. However, how and where Alpl acts in bone ageing is largely unknown. Here, we determined that ablation of Alpl induces prototypical premature bone ageing characteristics, including bone mass loss and marrow fat gain coupled with elevated expression of p16INK4A (p16) and p53 due to senescence and impaired differentiation in mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Mechanistically, Alpl deficiency in MSCs enhances ATP release and reduces ATP hydrolysis. Then, the excessive extracellular ATP is, in turn, internalized by MSCs and causes an elevation in the intracellular ATP level, which consequently inactivates the AMPKα pathway and contributes to the cell fate switch of MSCs.

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