Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.514, No.3, 868-874, 2019
SLIT2 inhibits osteoclastogenesis and bone resorption by suppression of Cdc42 activity
Axon guidance molecules, originally found to mediate the positioning of axons during nerve development, have been receiving great attention due to their critical roles in regulating bone metabolism. Recently, SLITs, another group of neuronal guidance proteins, were found to be significantly expressed in bone cells. Furthermore, we had provided experimental evidence that SLIT3 is an osteoclast-secreted coupling factor playing an osteoprotective role. Therefore, we hypothesized that SLIT2, a member of the SLIT family, may also affect bone homeostasis. SLIT2 suppressed osteoclast differentiation in a dose-dependent manner and in vitro bone resorption by more than 80%. Consistently, the expression of osteoclast differentiation markers, such as tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (Trap) and calcitonin receptor (Ctr), was decreased by SLIT2. The migration and fusion of preosteoclasts were markedly reduced in the presence of SLIT2, suggesting that SLIT2 mainly functions in the early stage of osteoclastogenesis. SLIT2 suppressed Cdc42 activity among small GTPases, whereas Cdc42 overexpression almost completely reversed the SLIT2-mediated suppression of osteoclast differentiation. Among ROBO1-4, the SLIT receptors, ROBO1 and ROBO3 were known to be predominantly expressed in osteoclast lineages. A binding ELISA experiment in mouse bone marrow-derived macrophages showed that ROBO1, rather than ROBO3, was directly associated with SLIT2, and gene silencing with Robo1 siRNA blocked the SLIT2-mediated suppression of osteoclastogenesis. Taken together, our results indicated that SLIT2 inhibits osteoclastogenesis and the resultant bone resorption by decreasing Cdc42 activity, suggesting that this was a potential therapeutic target in metabolic bone diseases related to high bone turnover states. (C) 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.