Fibroblast growth factor-2 stimulates the proliferation of mesenchyme-derived progenitor cells from aging mouse and human bone

J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2010 Oct;65(10):1051-9. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glq114. Epub 2010 Jul 19.


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.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow Cells / drug effects*
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 2 / pharmacology*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Middle Aged
  • Young Adult


  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 2