Tissue-specific expression of bone proteins in femora of growing rats

R. T. Turner, S. N. Kapelner, T. C. Spelsberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Total cellular RNA was extracted from bone cells of three different femoral compartments of 2-mo-old rats. The intact femora were first incubated with collagenase to obtain periosteal cells. The bisected periosteum-free diaphyses and metaphyses were then incubated with collagenase to obtain enriched populations of endosteal and cancellous bone cells, respectively. The total cellular RNA from these three tissues was separated by size using agarose gel electrophoresis, transferred to nylon filters, hybridized to 32P-labeled cDNA probes for glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAP), prepor-α (I) type I collagen (collagen), osteocalcin (BGP), and alkaline phosphatase (AP), and the cDNA/mRNA hybrids were visualized by radioautography. Bone matrix deposition was measured in each tissue compartment by tetracycline-based dynamic bone histomorphometry. The bone formation and apposition rates were greatest in the periosteum and least in metaphysis. Mean mRNA levels for collagen and BGP were positively correlated with mean bone formation and mineral apposition rates. Interestingly, mean AP mRNA levels were not correlated with indexes of bone formation. These results demonstrate that the steady-state mRNA levels for bone matrix proteins in femora show pronounced site specificity and correlate with the rates of bone matrix deposition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E724-E729
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number4 26-4
StatePublished - 1992


  • bone matrix proteins
  • dynamic bone histomorphometry
  • mRNA levels for type I collagen, alkaline phosphatase, and osteocalcin
  • rat bone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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