B. Abortus Modulates Osteoblast Function Through the Induction of Autophagy.

Research paper by Ayelén Ivana AI Pesce Viglietti, Maria Virginia MV Gentilini, Paula Constanza PC Arriola Benitez, Guillermo Hernán GH Giambartolomei, María Victoria MV Delpino

Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology


Osteoarticular brucellosis is the most common localization of human active disease. Osteoblasts are specialized mesenchymal-derived cells involved in bone formation and are considered as professional mineralizing cells. Autophagy has been involved in osteoblast metabolism. The present study demonstrates that infection induces the activation of the autophagic pathway in osteoblast cells. Autophagy was revealed by upregulation of LC3II/LC3I ratio and Beclin-1 expression as well as inhibition of p62 expression in infected cells. Induction of autophagy was also corroborated by using the pharmacological inhibitors wortmannin, a PI 3-kinase inhibitor, and leupeptin plus E64 (inhibitors of lysosomal proteases). Autophagy induction create a microenvironment that modifies osteoblast metabolism by the inhibition of the deposition of organic and mineral matrix, the induction of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2, osteopontin, and RANKL secretion leading to bone loss. Accordingly, autophagy is also involved in the down-modulation of the master transcription factor in bone formation osterix during infection. Taking together our results indicate that induces the activation of autophagy pathway in osteoblast cells and this activation is involved in the modulation of osteoblast function and bone formation.