The role of osteoprotegerin (OPG) in fibrosis: its potential as a biomarker and/or biological target for the treatment of fibrotic diseases

Habibie H., Adhyatmika A., Schaafsma D., Melgert B.N.

University of Groningen, Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Groningen Research Institute of Pharmacy, Groningen, Netherlands; University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, GRIAC Research Institute, Groningen, Netherlands; Hasanuddin University, Faculty of Pharmacy, Makassar, Indonesia; Gadjah Mada University, Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy, Yogyakarta, Indonesia; Science Impact, Winnipeg, Canada


Fibrosis is defined by excessive formation and accumulation of extracellular matrix proteins, produced by myofibroblasts, that supersedes normal wound healing responses to injury and results in progressive architectural remodelling. Fibrosis is often detected in advanced disease stages when an organ is already severely damaged and can no longer function properly. Therefore, there is an urgent need for reliable and easily detectable markers to identify and monitor fibrosis onset and progression as early as possible; this will greatly facilitate the development of novel therapeutic strategies. Osteoprotegerin (OPG), a well-known regulator of bone extracellular matrix and most studied for its role in regulating bone mass, is expressed in various organs and functions as a decoy for receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand (RANKL) and tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL). Recently, OPG has been linked to fibrosis and fibrogenesis, and has been included in a panel of markers to diagnose liver fibrosis. Multiple studies now suggest that OPG may be a general biomarker suitable for detection of fibrosis and/or monitoring the impact of fibrosis treatment. This review summarizes our current understanding of the role of OPG in fibrosis and will discuss its potential as a biomarker and/or novel therapeutic target for fibrosis. © 2021 The Authors

Fibroblast; Lung; RANKL; TGFβ; TNFRSF11B; TRAIL


Pharmacology and Therapeutics

Publisher: Elsevier Inc.

Volume 228, Issue , Art No 107941, Page – , Page Count

Journal Link:

doi: 10.1016/j.pharmthera.2021.107941

Issn: 01637258

Type: All Open Access, Hybrid Gold


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