An estrogen deficiency is the main cause of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. In bone remodeling, estrogen receptors (ERs) can mediate estrogen-transducing signals. Methylpiperidinopyrazole (MPP) is a highly specific antagonist of ER-alpha (ERα). This study was designed to evaluate the effects of MPP on estrogen-induced energy production, subsequent osteoblast maturation, and the possible mechanisms. Exposure of primary osteoblasts isolated from neonatal rat calvarias to MPP did not affect cell morphology or survival. Estradiol can induce translocation of ERα into mitochondria from the cytoplasm. Interestingly, pretreatment of rat calvarial osteoblasts with MPP lowered estrogen-induced ERα translocation. Sequentially, estrogen-triggered expressions of mitochondrial energy production-linked cytochrome c oxidase (COX) I and COX II messenger (m)RNAs were inhibited following pretreatment with MPP. Consequently, MPP caused decreases in estrogen-triggered augmentation of the activities of mitochondrial respiratory complex enzymes and levels of cellular adenosine phosphate (ATP). During progression of osteoblast maturation, estrogen induced bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-6 and type I collagen mRNA expressions, but MPP treatment inhibited such induction. Consequently, estrogen-induced osteoblast activation and mineralization were attenuated after exposure to MPP. Taken together, MPP suppressed estrogen-induced osteoblast maturation through decreasing chromosomal osteogenesis-related BMP-6 and type I collagen mRNA expressions and mitochondrial ATP synthesis due to inhibiting energy production-linked COX I and II mRNA expressions. MPP can appropriately be applied to evaluate estrogen-involved bioenergetics and osteoblast maturation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas