Research ArticleCELL BIOLOGY

Osteoblastic lysosome plays a central role in mineralization

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Science Advances  03 Jul 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 7, eaax0672
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aax0672


Mineralization is the most fundamental process in vertebrates. It is predominantly mediated by osteoblasts, which secrete mineral precursors, most likely through matrix vesicles (MVs). These vesicular structures are calcium and phosphate rich and contain organic material such as acidic proteins. However, it remains largely unknown how intracellular MVs are transported and secreted. Here, we use scanning electron-assisted dielectric microscopy and super-resolution microscopy for assessing live osteoblasts in mineralizing conditions at a nanolevel resolution. We found that the calcium-containing vesicles were multivesicular bodies containing MVs. They were transported via lysosome and secreted by exocytosis. Thus, we present proof that the lysosome transports amorphous calcium phosphate within mineralizing osteoblasts.

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