LCN2 overexpression in bone enhances the hematopoietic compartment via modulation of the bone marrow microenvironment

Delfina Costa, Elisa Principi, Edoardo Lazzarini, Fiorella Descalzi, Ranieri Cancedda, Patrizio Castagnola, Sara Tavella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lipocalin-2 (LCN2) is a member of the lipocalin family whose expression is modulated in several conditions, including cell differentiation, innate immunity, stress, and cancer. Although it is known that it is expressed in bone, its function in this tissue remains poorly studied. To this end, we took advantage of transgenic mice lines that expressed LCN2 driven by a bone specific type I collagen (LCN2-Tg). In the bone marrow (BM) of LCN2-Tg mice we observed an increased number of phenotypically long-term hematopoietic stem cells (LT-HSC) that also displayed a higher proliferation rate compared to wild-type controls (Wt). Furthermore, hematopoietic progenitor cells, obtained from LCN2-Tg BM showed an increased clonogenic capacity compared to those obtained from LCN2-Tg spleen, a higher concentration of serum erythropoietin and a higher number of mature erythrocytes in the peripheral blood of old LCN2-Tg animals compared to aged-matched wt. The findings of a combined increase in the BM of the LCN2-Tg mice of SDF-1, SCF, and TIMP-1 levels along with the reduction of both MMP-9 activity and cathepsin K concentration may explain the observed effects on the HSC compartment. This study shows that LCN2 overexpression in bones modifies the BM microenvironment via modulation of the expression of key secreted factors and cytokines, which in turn regulate the HSC niche behavior enhancing both HSC homing in young mice and erythrocytes production in older mice.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Cellular Physiology
Early online dateDec 22 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Dec 22 2016


  • Bone marrow microenvironment
  • Hematopoietic cells
  • Lipocalin-2
  • Transgenic mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Physiology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'LCN2 overexpression in bone enhances the hematopoietic compartment via modulation of the bone marrow microenvironment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this