Research Article

Matricellular Protein SMOC2 Potentiates BMP9-Induced Osteogenic Differentiation in Mesenchymal Stem Cells through the Enhancement of FAK/PI3K/AKT Signaling

Figure 5

SMOC2 potentiates BMP9-induced ectopic bone formation in MEF implantation in vivo, while knockdown of FAK inhibits bone formation. (a) Macrographic images of ectopic bone mass. MEFs were implanted subcutaneously after infection with the designed adenoviruses. Ectopic osseous masses were retrieved at 4 weeks. Representative images are shown. (b) Masson’s trichrome staining results showed the effect of SMOC2 and FAK knockdown on BMP9-induced ectopic bone masses in MEFs (scale bar is 50 μm for the panel). (c) Hematoxylin-eosin (H&E) staining results showed that the osteogenesis ability was affected by SMOC2 and/or FAK knockdown in MEFs (scale bar is 200 μm for upper panel and 50 μm for lower panel). (d) Immunohistochemical staining results showed the expression relationship between p-FAK and p-AKT1/2/3. Ectopic osseous masses were retrieved at 4 weeks. The expression of p-FAK and p-AKT1/2/3 was assessed by immunohistochemical staining analysis. Representative images are shown (scale bar is 50 μm for the panel).