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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 895706, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/895706
Research Article

In Vivo Determination of Vitamin D Function Using Transgenic Mice Carrying a Human Osteocalcin Luciferase Reporter Gene

1Division of Molecular Biology, School of Life Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Tottori University, Yonago, Nishicho 86, Tottori 683-8503, Japan
2Chromosome Engineering Research Center, Tottori University, Yonago, Tottori 683-8503, Japan

Received 5 July 2012; Revised 15 February 2013; Accepted 26 February 2013

Academic Editor: Elena Orlova

Copyright © 2013 Tomoko Nakanishi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Vitamin D is an essential factor for ossification, and its deficiency causes rickets. Osteocalcin, which is a noncollagenous protein found in bone matrix and involved in mineralization and calcium ion homeostasis, is one of the major bone morphogenetic markers and is used in the evaluation of osteoblast maturation and osteogenic activation. We established transgenic mouse line expressing luciferase under the control of a 10-kb osteocalcin enhancer/promoter sequence. Using these transgenic mice, we evaluated the active forms of vitamins D2 and D3 for their bone morphogenetic function by in vivo bioluminescence. As the result, strong activity for ossification was observed with 1α,25-hydroxyvitamin D3. Our mouse system can offer a feasible detection method for assessment of osteogenic activity in the development of functional foods and medicines by noninvasive screening.