Cell-Based Double-Screening Method to Identify a Reliable Candidate for Osteogenesis-Targeting Compounds

Sho Fukuyasu, Hiroki Kayashima, Akihito Moribayashi, Shu Matsuoka, Atsuhiro Nagasaki, Hiroko Okawa, Hirofumi Yatani, Makio Saeki, Hiroshi Egusa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Small-molecule compounds strongly affecting osteogenesis can form the basis of effective therapeutic strategies in bone regenerative medicine. A cell-based high-throughput screening system might be a powerful tool for identifying osteoblast-targeting candidates; however, this approach is generally limited with using only one molecule as a cell-based sensor that does not always reflect the activation of the osteogenic phenotype. In the present study, we used the MC3T3-E1 cell line stably transfected with the green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter gene driven by a fragment of type I collagen promoter (Col-1a1GFP-MC3T3-E1) to evaluate a double-screening system to identify osteogenic inducible compounds using a combination of a cell-based reporter assay and detection of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity. Col-1a1GFP-MC3T3-E1 cells were cultured in an osteogenic induction medium after library screening of 1280 pharmacologically active compounds (Lopack1280 ). After 7 days, GFP fluorescence was measured using a microplate reader. After 14 days of osteogenic induction, the cells were stained with ALP. Library screening using the Col-1a1/GFP reporter and ALP staining assay detected three candidates with significant osteogenic induction ability. Furthermore, leflunomide, one of the three detected candidates, significantly promoted new bone formation in vivo. Therefore, this double-screening method could identify candidates for osteogenesis-targeting compounds more reliably than conventional methods.

Original languageEnglish
Article number426
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Feb


  • Bone defect
  • Compound
  • Library screening
  • Osteogenesis
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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