Mechanisms of bone development and repair

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2020 Nov;21(11):696-711. doi: 10.1038/s41580-020-00279-w. Epub 2020 Sep 8.


Bone development occurs through a series of synchronous events that result in the formation of the body scaffold. The repair potential of bone and its surrounding microenvironment - including inflammatory, endothelial and Schwann cells - persists throughout adulthood, enabling restoration of tissue to its homeostatic functional state. The isolation of a single skeletal stem cell population through cell surface markers and the development of single-cell technologies are enabling precise elucidation of cellular activity and fate during bone repair by providing key insights into the mechanisms that maintain and regenerate bone during homeostasis and repair. Increased understanding of bone development, as well as normal and aberrant bone repair, has important therapeutic implications for the treatment of bone disease and ageing-related degeneration.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Development / physiology*
  • Bone Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Bone and Bones / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Regeneration / physiology*