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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Type I procollagen synthesis is regulated by steroids and related hormones in human osteosarcoma cells.

Change in the synthesis of type I collagen, the major extracellular matrix component of skin and bone, are associated with normal growth, tissue repair processes, and several pathological conditions. Expression of the COL 1A1 gene is regulated by transcriptional and post-transcriptional mechanisms. However, the hormonal regulation of type I collagen synthesis in human bone has not been well characterized. We have studied the influence of calcitriol, dexamethasone, retinoic acid, and estradiol on the COL 1A1 gene expression by determining the secretion of the C-terminal propeptide (PICP) and the levels of alpha 1(I) procollagen mRNA in cultured human MG-63 and SaOs-2 osteoblast-like osteosarcoma cells. Similar experiments were also performed with respect to expression of the nuclear proto-oncogenes, c-fos and c-jun, in MG-63 cells. In MG-63 cells, calcitriol stimulated the synthesis and secretion of PICP. The alpha 1(I) procollagen mRNA level was elevated with no effect on message stability, indicating a transcriptional mechanism of regulation. In contrast, dexamethasone treatment was accompanied by an accelerated rate of alpha 1(I) procollagen mRNA turnover, observed as decreased amounts of the message and the secreted PICP, implying a posttranscriptional regulation. Retinoic acid, in turn, decreased the levels of alpha 1(I) procollagen mRNA and secreted PICP by slowing down transcription of the COL1A1 gene without any effect on message stability. The ability of these hormones to regulate the alpha 1(I) transcripts was sensitive to puromycin treatment, suggesting an involvement of an induced mediator protein in the action of the hormones on the COL1A1 gene. Both dexamethasone and calcitriol rapidly but transiently increased the expression of the c-fos and c-jun proto-oncogenes. Neither proto-oncogene responded to retinoic acid treatment with significant changes in mRNA levels. Estradiol treatment was found to have no influence on type I procollagen synthesis. In SaOs-2 cells, which are not as well differentiated as the MG-63 cells, calcitriol and dexamethasone did not influence type I procollagen synthesis. Retinoic acid as well as estradiol reduced collagen gene expression in these cells. These findings suggest that hormonal effects on type I procollagen synthesis may depend on the maturational state of the osteoblastic cells that express different regulatory factors and receptors, resulting in, in each case, a finely adjusted rate of gene expression.[1]


  1. Type I procollagen synthesis is regulated by steroids and related hormones in human osteosarcoma cells. Mahonen, A., Jukkola, A., Risteli, L., Risteli, J., Mäenpää, P.H. J. Cell. Biochem. (1998) [Pubmed]
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