RECENT RESEARCH ON THE GROWTH PLATE: Recent insights into the regulation of the growth plate

    1. Jeffrey Baron1
    1. 1Program in Developmental Endocrinology and Genetics, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, CRC, Room 1-3330, 10 Center Drive, MSC 1103, Bethesda, Maryland 20892-1103, USA
      2Center for Molecular Medicine and Pediatric Endocrinology Unit, Department of Women's and Children's Health, Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska University Hospital, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden
    1. Correspondence should be addressed to J C Lui; Email: luichunk{at}


    For most bones, elongation is driven primarily by chondrogenesis at the growth plates. This process results from chondrocyte proliferation, hypertrophy, and extracellular matrix secretion, and it is carefully orchestrated by complex networks of local paracrine factors and modulated by endocrine factors. We review here recent advances in the understanding of growth plate physiology. These advances include new approaches to study expression patterns of large numbers of genes in the growth plate, using microdissection followed by microarray. This approach has been combined with genome-wide association studies to provide insights into the regulation of the human growth plate. We also review recent studies elucidating the roles of bone morphogenetic proteins, fibroblast growth factors, C-type natriuretic peptide, and suppressor of cytokine signaling in the local regulation of growth plate chondrogenesis and longitudinal bone growth.

    • Revision received 1 April 2014
    • Accepted 8 April 2014
    • Made available online as an Accepted Preprint 16 April 2014
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