Interleukin 17 enhances bone morphogenetic protein-2-induced ectopic bone formation

M. Croes, M. C. Kruyt, W. M. Groen, K. M.A. Van Dorenmalen, W. J.A. Dhert, F. C. Öner, J. Alblas*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Interleukin 17 (IL-17) stimulates the osteogenic differentiation of progenitor cells in vitro through a synergy with bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-2. This study investigates whether the diverse responses mediated by IL-17 in vivo also lead to enhanced BMP-2-induced bone formation. Since IL-17 is known to induce osteoclastogenesis, we studied the interactions between IL-17 and BMP-2 in ceramic scaffolds either or not carrying a coating with the bisphosphonate zoledronic acid (ZOL). Histological evaluation revealed that IL-17 alone did not induce any osteoclasts at day 10. On the other hand, BMP-2 clearly stimulated early tissue ingrowth and osteoclastogenesis. Both of these processes were blocked in presence of ZOL. IL-17 signaling restored early vascularized connective tissue formation and osteoclastogenesis induced by BMP-2 in ZOL-coated scaffolds. After 12 weeks, the bone volume induced by co-delivery of BMP-2 and IL-17 was doubled as compared to that induced by BMP-2 alone. We conclude that IL-17 has osteo-stimulatory effects through a synergy with bone-inductive BMP-2. Although local and single application of IL-17 does not mediate osteoclast formation, it could promote other processes involved in bone formation such as connective tissue ingrowth. The use of IL-17 may contribute to the development of improved bone graft substitutes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7269
Number of pages13
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


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