Since its first description more than 20 years ago osteopontin has emerged as an active player in many physiological and pathological processes, including biomineralization, tissue remodeling and inflammation. As an extracellular matrix protein and proinflammatory cytokine osteopontin is thought to facilitate the recruitment of monocytes/macrophages and to mediate cytokine secretion in leukocytes. Modulation of immune cell response by osteopontin has been associated with various inflammatory diseases and may play a pivotal role in the development of adipose tissue inflammation and insulin resistance. Here we summarize recent findings on the role of osteopontin in metabolic disorders, particularly focusing on diabetes and obesity.
Keywords: Biomineralization; Diabetic nephropathy; Inflammation; Insulin resistance; Insulin sensitivity; Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; Obesity; Osteopontin; Tissue remodeling.