Distinct Osteogenic Potentials of BMP-2 and FGF-2 in Extramedullary and Medullary Microenvironments

Int J Mol Sci. 2020 Oct 27;21(21):7967. doi: 10.3390/ijms21217967.


Bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) have been regarded as the major cytokines promoting bone formation, however, several studies have reported unexpected results with failure of bone formation or bone resorption of these growth factors. In this study, BMP-2 and FGF-2 adsorbed into atellocollagen sponges were transplanted into bone defects in the bone marrow-scarce calvaria (extramedullary environment) and bone marrow-abundant femur (medullary environment) for analysis of their in vivo effects not only on osteoblasts, osteoclasts but also on bone marrow cells. The results showed that BMP-2 induced high bone formation in the bone marrow-scarce calvaria, but induced bone resorption in the bone marrow-abundant femurs. On the other hand, FGF-2 showed opposite effects compared to those of BMP-2. Analysis of cellular dynamics revealed numerous osteoblasts and osteoclasts present in the newly-formed bone induced by BMP-2 in calvaria, but none were seen in either control or FGF-2-transplanted groups. On the other hand, in the femur, numerous osteoclasts were observed in the vicinity of the BMP-2 pellet, while a great number of osteoblasts were seen near the FGF-2 pellets or in the control group. Of note, FCM analysis showed that both BMP-2 and FGF-2 administrated in the femur did not significantly affect the hematopoietic cell population, indicating a relatively safe application of the two growth factors. Together, these results indicate that BMP-2 could be suitable for application in extramedullary bone regeneration, whereas FGF-2 could be suitable for application in medullary bone regeneration.

Keywords: BMP-2; FGF-2; bone formation; bone marrow.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow / drug effects*
  • Bone Marrow / metabolism
  • Bone Morphogenetic Protein 2 / chemistry
  • Bone Morphogenetic Protein 2 / metabolism*
  • Bone Regeneration / drug effects
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cellular Microenvironment
  • Collagen / administration & dosage*
  • Collagen / chemistry
  • Drug Implants
  • Femur / cytology
  • Femur / diagnostic imaging
  • Femur / drug effects
  • Femur / injuries*
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 2 / chemistry
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 2 / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Osteogenesis
  • Skull / cytology
  • Skull / diagnostic imaging
  • Skull / drug effects
  • Skull / injuries*
  • X-Ray Microtomography


  • BMP2 protein, human
  • Bone Morphogenetic Protein 2
  • Drug Implants
  • atelocollagen
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 2
  • Collagen