The potential of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) to stimulate osteoprogenitors in aging bone was investigated. Previous work showed a decrease in bone formation in cell cultures derived from bone of elderly female patients, but not in cells from age-matched male or younger female patients, with transforming growth factor β increasing bone formation but not increasing osteoprogenitors. In the present study, FGF-2 was shown to significantly stimulate, in a dose-dependent manner, proliferation of mesenchyme-derived progenitor cells from bones of young and old mouse and humans. In proliferation assays, human cells were more responsive to lower concentrations (0.0016 ng/mL) of FGF-2 than mouse cells, but proliferation was less in cells from older bone. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that FGF-2 increased and prevented the decline in cells expressing activated leukocyte cell adhesion molecule, a novel marker for early lineage osteoblasts, but not α-smooth muscle actin. FGF-2 may have therapeutic potential for stimulating osteoblast progenitors in aging.