Primary cilia are non-motile, microtubule-based sensory organelle present in most vertebrate cells with a fundamental role in the modulation of organismal development, morphogenesis, and repair. Here we focus on the role of primary cilia in embryonic and postnatal skeletal development. We examine evidence supporting its involvement in physiochemical and developmental signaling that regulates proliferation, patterning, differentiation and homeostasis of osteoblasts, chondrocytes, and their progenitor cells in the skeleton. We discuss how signaling effectors in mechanotransduction and bone development, such as Hedgehog, Wnt, Fibroblast growth factor and second messenger pathways operate at least in part at the primary cilium. The relevance of primary cilia in bone formation and maintenance is underscored by a growing list of rare genetic skeletal ciliopathies. We collate these findings and summarize the current understanding of molecular factors and mechanisms governing primary ciliogenesis and ciliary function in skeletal development and disease.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology