The amazing osteocyte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

982 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The last decade has provided a virtual explosion of data on the molecular biology and function of osteocytes. Far from being the "passive placeholder in bone," this cell has been found to have numerous functions, such as acting as an orchestrator of bone remodeling through regulation of both osteoclast and osteoblast activity and also functioning as an endocrine cell. The osteocyte is a source of soluble factors not only to target cells on the bone surface but also to target distant organs, such as kidney, muscle, and other tissues. This cell plays a role in both phosphate metabolism and calcium availability and can remodel its perilacunar matrix. Osteocytes compose 90% to 95% of all bone cells in adult bone and are the longest lived bone cell, up to decades within their mineralized environment. As we age, these cells die, leaving behind empty lacunae that frequently micropetrose. In aged bone such as osteonecrotic bone, empty lacunae are associated with reduced remodeling. Inflammatory factors such as tumor necrosis factor and glucocorticoids used to treat inflammatory disease induce osteocyte cell death, but by different mechanisms with potentially different outcomes. Therefore, healthy, viable osteocytes are necessary for proper functionality of bone and other organs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-238
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Osteocytes
Bone and Bones
Endocrine Cells
isofenphos
Explosions
Bone Remodeling
Osteoclasts
Osteoblasts
Glucocorticoids
Molecular Biology
Cell Death
Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
Kidney
Muscles

Keywords

  • OSTEOCYTE
  • OSTEOCYTIC OSTEOLYSIS
  • OSTEOCYTIC RESORPTION
  • REMODELING

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism

Cite this

The amazing osteocyte. / Bonewald, Lynda.

In: Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, Vol. 26, No. 2, 02.2011, p. 229-238.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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