Members of the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) superfamily transduce signals via Smad proteins. Smad2 and Smad3 mediate TGF-beta signaling, whereas Smad1 and Smad5 transduce bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signals. Smad4 is a common mediator required for both pathways. Smad6 and Smad7 are recently identified members in the Smad family; they inhibit the signaling activity of the other Smad proteins. Here we show that expression of the Smad6 mRNA is dramatically induced by BMP-2 or osteogenic protein-1 (OP-1)/BMP-7 in various cells. BMP-2 induced expression of Smad7 in one cell type, although much less potently than that of Smad6. Smad6 message was induced by TGF-beta 1 in TGF-beta 1-responsive Mv1Lu cells, but the induction was transient in contrast to the induction by BMPs. These results indicate that Smad6 may form a feedback loop to regulate the signaling activity of BMPs.