Osteopontin is extensively expressed by macrophages following CNS demyelination but has a redundant role in remyelination

Neurobiol Dis. 2008 Aug;31(2):209-17. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2008.04.007. Epub 2008 May 4.


Osteopontin (OPN) is a key immunoregulator in the autoimmune-mediated demyelinating disease multiple sclerosis. OPN may also play a role in the remyelination since it is 1) a ligand for alpha V integrins, several of which regulate the properties of the oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) primarily responsible for remyelination, and 2) enhances myelin membrane formation in OPC lines. Here we show that OPN is expressed at high levels during remyelination of toxin-induced demyelination. The increased expression is due to mRNA expression in macrophages and follows differences in macrophage responses to demyelination in young and old adult animals. To identify the role of OPN in remyelination focal demyelination was induced in wild-type and OPN(-/-) mice. There was no difference in the rate of remyelination between the two groups indicating that OPN is not a critical component of remyelination.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aging / genetics
  • Aging / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Central Nervous System / metabolism*
  • Central Nervous System / pathology
  • Central Nervous System / physiopathology
  • Demyelinating Diseases / genetics
  • Demyelinating Diseases / metabolism*
  • Demyelinating Diseases / physiopathology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation / genetics
  • Macrophages / metabolism*
  • Macrophages / pathology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Myelin Sheath / metabolism*
  • Myelin Sheath / pathology
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / metabolism
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / pathology
  • Nerve Regeneration / genetics*
  • Oligodendroglia / metabolism
  • Osteopontin / genetics
  • Osteopontin / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Stem Cells / metabolism


  • RNA, Messenger
  • Spp1 protein, mouse
  • Osteopontin