Extracorporeal shock-wave (ESW) treatment has been shown to be effective in promoting the healing of fractures. We aimed to determine whether ESW could enhance the growth of bone-marrow osteoprogenitor cells. We applied ESW to the left femur of rats 10 mm above the knee at 0.16 mJ/mm 2 in a range of between 250 and 2000 impulses. Bone-marrow cells were harvested after ESW for one day and subjected to assessment of colony-forming unit (CFU) granulocytes, monocytes, erythrocytes, megakaryocytes (CFU-Mix), CFU-stromal cells (CFU-S) and CFU-osteoprogenitors (CFU-O). We found that the mean value for the CFU-O colonies after treatment with 500 impulses of ESW was 168.2 CFU-O/well (SEM 11.3) compared with 88.2 CFU-O/well (SEM 7.2) in the control group. By contrast, ESW treatment did not affect haematopoiesis as shown by the CFU-Mix (p = 0.557). Treatment with 250 and 500 impulses promoted CFU-O, but not CFU-Mix formations whereas treatment with more than 750 impulses had an inhibiting effect. Treatment with 500 impulses also enhanced the activity of bone alkaline phosphatase in the subculture of CFU-O (p<0.01), indicating a selective promotion of growth of osteoprogenitor cells. Similarly, formation of bone nodules in the long-term culture of bone-marrow osteoprogenitor cells was also significantly enhanced by ESW treatment with 500 impulses. The mean production of TGF-β1 was 610 pg/ml (SEM 84.6) in culture supernatants from ESW-treated rats compared with 283 pg/ml (SEM 36.8) in the control group. Our findings suggest that optimal treatment with ESW could enhance rat bone-marrow stromal growth and differentiation towards osteoprogenitors presumably by induction of TGF-β1.
ASJC Scopus subject areas