Osteoprogenitor Cells from Bone Marrow and Cortical Bone: Understanding How the Environment Affects Their Fate

Bruna Corradetti, Francesca Taraballi, Sebastian Powell, David Sung, Silvia Minardi, Mauro Ferrari, Bradley K. Weiner, Ennio Tasciotti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Bone is a dynamic organ where skeletal progenitors and hematopoietic cells share and compete for space. Presumptive mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) have been identified and harvested from the bone marrow (BM-MSC) and cortical bone fragments (CBF-MSC). In this study, we demonstrate that despite the cells sharing a common ancestor, the differences in the structural properties of the resident tissues affect cell behavior and prime them to react differently to stimuli. Similarly to the bone marrow, the cortical portion of the bone contains a unique subset of cells that stains positively for the common MSC-associated markers. These cells display different multipotent differentiation capability, clonogenic expansion, and immunosuppressive potential. In particular, when compared with BM-MSC, CBF-MSC are bigger in size, show a lower proliferation rate at early passages, have a greater commitment toward the osteogenic lineage, constitutively produce nitric oxide as a mediator for bone remodeling, and more readily respond to proinflammatory cytokines. Our data suggest that the effect of the tissue's microenvironment makes the CBF-MSC a superior candidate in the development of new strategies for bone repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1112-1123
Number of pages12
JournalStem Cells and Development
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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