Angiogenesis plays an important role in physiological bone growth and remodeling, as well as in pathological bone disorders such as fracture repair, osteonecrosis, and tumor metastasis to bone. Vascularization is required for bone remodeling along the endosteal surface of trabecular bone or Haversian canals within the cortical bone, as well as the homeostasis of the cartilage-subchondral bone interface. Angiogenic factors, produced by cells from a basic multicellular unit (BMU) within the bone remodeling compartment (BRC) regulate local endothelial cells and pericytes. In this review, we discuss the expression and function of angiogenic factors produced by osteoclasts, osteoblasts and osteocytes in the BMU and in the cartilage-subchondral bone interface. These include vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), BMP7, receptor activator of NF-κB ligand (RANKL) and epidermal growth factor (EGF)-like family members. In addition, the expression of EGFL2, EGFL3, EGFL5, EGFL6, EGFL7, EGFL8 and EGFL9 has been recently identified in the bone local environment, giving important clues to their possible roles in angiogenesis. Understanding the role of angiogenic factors in the bone microenvironment may help to develop novel therapeutic targets and diagnostic biomarkers for bone and joint diseases, such as osteoporosis, osteonecrosis, osteoarthritis, and delayed fracture healing.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Immunology and Allergy
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Bone remodeling
- Bone remodeling compartment