Crosstalk between Bone and Nerves within Bone

Qian Qian Wan, Wen Pin Qin, Yu Xuan Ma, Min Juan Shen, Jing Li, Zi Bin Zhang, Ji Hua Chen, Franklin R. Tay, Li Na Niu, Kai Jiao

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


For the past two decades, the function of intrabony nerves on bone has been a subject of intense research, while the function of bone on intrabony nerves is still hidden in the corner. In the present review, the possible crosstalk between bone and intrabony peripheral nerves will be comprehensively analyzed. Peripheral nerves participate in bone development and repair via a host of signals generated through the secretion of neurotransmitters, neuropeptides, axon guidance factors and neurotrophins, with additional contribution from nerve-resident cells. In return, bone contributes to this microenvironmental rendezvous by housing the nerves within its internal milieu to provide mechanical support and a protective shelf. A large ensemble of chemical, mechanical, and electrical cues works in harmony with bone marrow stromal cells in the regulation of intrabony nerves. The crosstalk between bone and nerves is not limited to the physiological state, but also involved in various bone diseases including osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, heterotopic ossification, psychological stress-related bone abnormalities, and bone related tumors. This crosstalk may be harnessed in the design of tissue engineering scaffolds for repair of bone defects or be targeted for treatment of diseases related to bone and peripheral nerves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2003390
JournalAdvanced Science
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 7 2021


  • bioactive factors
  • bone metabolism
  • crosstalk
  • nerve growth
  • peripheral nerves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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