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Int J Med Sci 2012; 9(2):184-192. doi:10.7150/ijms.3859

Research Paper

Effect of Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 on Proliferation and Apoptosis of Gastric Cancer Cells

Junjie Zhang#, Yanli Ge#, Longe Sun#, Jianchun Cao, Qiong Wu, Likun Guo, Zhirong Wang

Department of Gastroenterology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji University, Shanghai 200065, China
#Contributed equally.


Objective: To investigate the effects of bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) on the proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis of normal human gastric mucosal cells and gastric cancer cells.

Methods: Poorly differentiated gastric cancer BGC823 cells, moderately differentiated gastric cancer cells and normal human gastric mucosal epithelial GES-1 cells were independently treated with recombinant human BMP-2 or its inhibitor Noggin. MTT assay was performed to detect the proliferation, flow cytometry done to measure the cell cycle and apoptosis and immunohistochemistry carried out to determine the expression of cyclin-dependent kinase 4 (CDK4).

Results: BMP-2 exerted inhibitory effect on the growth of all types of cells and the inhibition become more evident with the increase of BMP-2 dose. After treatment with 200 ng/ml BMP-2, cancer cells arrested in G1 phase and those in S phase reduced. Gastric cancer cells had higher CDK4 expression than GES-1 cells. BMP-2 decreased CDK-4 expression in cancer cells but had no influence in GES-1 cells. Noggin conferred promotive effect on the growth of 3 types of cells. In 2 types of cancer cells, treatment with 2000 ng/ml Noggin significantly increased the proportion of cells in S phase but reduced that in G1 phase. However, Noggin did not affect the cell cycle of GES-1 cells. The CDK4 expression was markedly increased in 2 types of cancer cells but that of GES-1 remained unchanged after treatment with 2000 ng/ml Noggin.

Conclusions: BMP-2 may inhibit the proliferation of both normal and malignant gastric epithelial cells, down-regulate CDK4 expression in gastric cancer cells and arrest gastric cancer cells in G1-phase in cell cycle. Through antagonizing BMP-2, Noggin, may accelerate the proliferation of gastric cancer cells. Thus, the abnormality of BMP signaling pathway may play an important role in the pathogenesis of gastric cancer.

Keywords: Bone morphogenetic protein 2, Noggin, gastric cancer cell, proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis, cyclin-dependent kinase 4

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) License. See for full terms and conditions.
How to cite this article:
Zhang J, Ge Y, Sun L, Cao J, Wu Q, Guo L, Wang Z. Effect of Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 on Proliferation and Apoptosis of Gastric Cancer Cells. Int J Med Sci 2012; 9(2):184-192. doi:10.7150/ijms.3859. Available from