Decreased effectiveness of bones’ adaptive response to mechanical loading contributes to age-related bone loss. In young mice, intermittent administration of parathyroid hormone (iPTH) at 20-80μg/kg/day interacts synergistically with artificially applied loading to increase bone mass. Here we report investigations on the effect of different doses and duration of iPTH treatment on mice whose osteogenic response to artificial loading is impaired by age. One group of aged, 19-month-old female C57BL/6 mice were given 0, 25, 50 or 100μg/kg/day iPTH for 4 weeks. Histological and μCT analysis of their tibiae revealed potent iPTH dose-related increases in periosteally-enclosed area, cortical area and porosity with decreased cortical thickness. There was practically no effect on trabecular bone. Another group were given a submaximal dose of 50 μg/kg/day iPTH or vehicle for 2 or 6 weeks with loading of their right tibia three times per week for the final 2 weeks. In the trabecular bone of these mice the loading-related increase in BV/TV was abrogated by iPTH primarily by reduction in the increase in trabecular number. In their cortical bone, iPTH treatment time-dependently increased cortical porosity. Loading partially reduced this effect. The osteogenic effects of iPTH and loading on periosteally-enclosed area and cortical area were additive but not synergistic. Thus in aged, unlike young mice, iPTH and loading appear to have separate effects. iPTH alone causes a marked increase in cortical porosity which loading reduces. Both iPTH and loading have positive effects on cortical periosteal bone formation but these are additive rather than synergistic.
- Parathyroid hormone
- Mechanical loading