Signaling reactions induced in human fibroblasts during adhesion to cementum-derived attachment protein

Masahiro Saito, A. Sampath Narayanan

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17 Citations (Scopus)


Cementum-derived attachment protein (CAP) is a M(r) 56,000 collagenous protein which promotes the adhesion and spreading of mesenchymal cell types. The CAP promotes the adhesion of osteoblasts and periodontal ligament cells better than gingival fibroblasts, while epithelial cells do not adhere to CAP-coated surfaces. To understand the mechanisms involved in CAP action, we have studied the signal transduction events induced by the CAP in human fibroblasts during cell adhesion. Human gingival fibroblasts were serum starved for 48 h, trypsinized, and added to non-tissue culture plastic plates previously coated with CAP. At various time points, attached cells were examined for induction of signaling reactions. Adherence of cells to plates coated with CAP caused tyrosine phosphorylation of proteins migrating on PAGE with molecular mass of 125-130, 85, 70, and 42-44 kDa. We identified focal adhesion kinase p125(FAK) and p130(cas) as components of the 125-130 kDa protein band; however, p125(FAK) was the major phosphorylated component. ERK- 1 and ERK-2 were detected in the 42-44 kDa protein band, but only the ERK-2, not ERK-1, was phosphorylated. Adhesion to CAP-stimulated mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activity and induced the expression of c-fos mRNA. Protein-tyrosine phosphorylation and c-fos mRNA expression were not induced in unattached cells, and adhesion was not abolished by the protein tyrosine kinase inhibitor, genestein. MAPK activity and c-fos mRNA expression were not induced in monolayer cultures, indicating that these reactions are induced by adhesion and not necessary for cell adhesion. The kinetics of MAPK activation were different from cells attaching on fibronectin (FN) or polylysine, and c- fos mRNA levels increased only half as much on FN and very little on polylysine. These data demonstrated that CAP and other adhesion molecules present in mineralized tissue matrices induce characteristic signaling events during adhesion, which may play a role in recruitment of specific cell types during wound healing and in mediating their specific biological functions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-72
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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