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Retinoid-induced bone thinning is caused by subperiosteal osteoclast activity in adult rodents.

Kneissel, Michaela, Studer, Anne, Cortesi, Reto and Susa Spring, Mira (2005) Retinoid-induced bone thinning is caused by subperiosteal osteoclast activity in adult rodents. Bone, 36 (2). pp. 202-214. ISSN 8756-3282


Excess of Vitamin A (retinol) and related compounds (retinoids) induces bone fragility and is associated with increased hip fracture incidence in humans. Yet, their impact on the adult skeleton has been studied in relatively little detail. It is assumed that they induce generalized bone loss and decrease long-bone thickness due to reduction of radial bone growth. Here we characterized early skeletal responses of adult rodents to retinoid treatment, revealing novel aspects of retinoid action on the mature skeleton. The retinoid Ro 13-6298, given subcutaneously for 4 days, induced bone loss in the hind limbs of 12- and 56-week-old rats and of 15-week-old mice. In vivo monitoring of bone mass and geometry changes by peripheral quantitative computed tomography demonstrated that bone mass decline was due to subperiosteal cortical bone loss, which induced a shrinkage of bone diameter, whilst cancellous bone mass was preserved. We observed that the native retinoic acid isomer all-trans RA induced an identical pattern of bone loss. Histomorphometric evaluation revealed that increased subperiosteal osteoclastic bone resorption caused the cortical bone destruction. Interestingly, bone resorption was suppressed in cancellous bone, which was in agreement with reduced in vitro formation of osteoclasts from bone marrow cells that were derived from the proximity of cancellous bone. The retinoid-induced increase in subperiosteal bone resorption could be blocked by bisphosphonate as direct potent inhibitor of osteoclast action, but not by estradiol. Retinoid treatment induced a reduction of bone-forming surfaces at the subperiosteal site, but not in cancellous bone. In vitro osteoblast performance was also reduced or unchanged, depending on the cellular system used and assay type/duration. In conclusion, our studies revealed that the impact of retinoids on bone is highly bone-compartment-specific at early treatment phases. Furthermore, we showed that bone diameter shrinks in the adult skeleton after retinoid treatment due to subperiosteal osteoclastic bone resorption. Thus, retinoid-induced bone thinning is not only due to reduced radial bone growth as previously assumed. Our findings might explain why high intake of retinol is associated with increased hip fracture risk in the elderly and suggest a therapy to prevent such potential negative effects.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: author can archive post-print (ie final draft post-refereeing); Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
Keywords: Osteoclasts; Cortical bone; Histomorphometry-animal; Computed tomography; Bone turnover
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Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2009 13:56
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2013 01:11


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