Disruption of the man-6-P targeting pathway in mice impairs osteoclast secretory lysosome biogenesis

Eline van Meel, Marielle Boonen, Haibo Zhao, Viola Oorschot, F. Patrick Ross, Stuart Kornfeld, Judith Klumperman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Osteoclasts are specialized cells that secrete lysosomal acid hydrolases at the site of bone resorption, a process critical for skeletal formation and remodeling. However, the cellular mechanism underlying this secretion and the organization of the endo-lysosomal system of osteoclasts have remained unclear. We report that osteoclasts differentiated in vitro from murine bone marrow macrophages contain two types of lysosomes. The major species is a secretory lysosome containing cathepsin K and tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP), two hydrolases critical for bone resorption. These secretory lysosomes are shown to fuse with the plasma membrane, allowing the regulated release of acid hydrolases at the site of bone resorption. The other type of lysosome contains cathepsin D, but little cathepsin K or TRAP. Osteoclasts from Gnptab-/- (gene encoding GlcNAc-1-phosphotransferase α, β-subunits) mice, which lack a functional mannose 6-phosphate (Man-6-P) targeting pathway, show increased secretion of cathepsin K and TRAP and impaired secretory lysosome formation. However, cathepsin D targeting was intact, showing that osteoclasts have a Man-6-P-independent pathway for selected acid hydrolases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)912-924
Number of pages13
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • Cathepsin D
  • Cathepsin K
  • Mannose 6-phosphate
  • Osteoclasts
  • Secretory lysosomes


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