Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) was shown to enhance rat stromal bone marrow cells in culture to produce mineralized bone-like tissue in response to dexamethasone (Dex) treatment. The purpose of this study was to explore the effect of hFGF on Dex-treated human stromal bone marrow cells (hSBMC) in culture. Human SBMC from 6 patients were cultured for 14 days (P0) and then subcultured and grown for 28 days in the presence of Dex (10-8 mol/L). The effect of bFGF on cell proliferation at P0 and protein content, DNA content, alkaline phosphatase activity (ALP), osteocalcin secretion, and formation of mineralized bone-like tissue (MET) at P1 was analyzed. bFGF treatment resulted in a 2.4-fold increase in cell number at P0 and a concentration-dependent increase in [3H]-thymidine incorporation at P1, reaching a maximum increase of 3.7-fold at a concentration of 0.3 ng/mL. Furthermore, bFGP significantly increased both DNA content (two- to threefold), protein content (five- to sixfold), and the amount of MBT (up to 20-fold) at P0 cultures. Morphological evaluation of the MBT at the electron microscope level revealed a mineralization process along collagen fibrils similar to the natural process. The osteogenic nature of the bFGF-treated cultures was further shown by their ALP activity, as well as osteocalcin secretion in response to 1,25-dihydroxgvitamin D3. In conclusion, bFGF demonstrated a stimulatory effect on the proliferation of Dex-treated hSBMC-derived osteoprogenitors while maintaining their capacity to fully differentiate and form bone-like tissue in culture.
- Basic fibroblast growth factor
- Bone marrow
- Human bone cell