Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology

, Volume 388, Issue 11, pp 1201–1209 | Cite as

Effects of Tanshinone IIA on osteogenic differentiation of mouse bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells

  • Kejun Qian
  • Huazhong Xu
  • Teng Dai
  • Keqing ShiEmail author
Original Article


Tanshinone IIA (TSA) is a lipophilic diterpene purified from the Chinese herb Danshen, which exhibits potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Effect of TSA remains largely uninvestigated on the osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs), which are widely used in cell-based therapy of bone diseases. In the present study, both ALP activity at day 7 and calcium content at day 24 were upregulated during the osteogenesis of mouse BM-MSCs treated with TSA (1 and 5 μM), demonstrating that it promoted the osteogenesis at both early and late stages. We found that TSA promoted osteogenesis and inhibited osteoclastogenesis, evident by RT-PCR analysis of osteogenic marker gene expressions. However, osteogenesis was inhibited by TSA at 20 μM. We further revealed that TSA (1 and 5 μM) upregulated BMP and Wnt signaling. Co-treatment with Wnt inhibitor DKK-1 or BMP inhibitor noggin significantly decreased the TSA-promoted osteogenesis, indicating that upregulation of BMP and Wnt signaling plays a significant role and contributes to the TSA-promoted osteogenesis. Of clinical interest, our study suggests TSA as a promising therapeutic strategy during implantation of BM-MSCs for a more effective treatment of bone diseases.


Tanshinone IIA Bone disease Mesenchymal stem cells Osteogenesis Osteoclastogenesis 






Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.

Supplementary material

210_2015_1154_MOESM1_ESM.docx (166 kb)
ESM 1 ESM 1 file contains analysis of cell viability, ROS production under TSA treatment. (DOCX 166 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryNanjing Medical University Affiliated Wuxi Second HospitalWuxiChina

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