Low-dose PTH increases osteoblast activity via decreased Mef2c/Sost in senescent osteopenic mice

    1. Pierre J Marie1,2
    1. 1UMR‐1132 Inserm, Hôpital Lariboisière, 2 Rue Ambroise Paré, 75475 Paris Cedex 10, France
      2Université Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Paris, France
    1. Correspondence should be addressed to P J Marie; Email: pierre.marie{at}inserm.fr


    Intermittent administration of parathyroid hormone (PTH) 1–34 at a standard dose has been shown to induce anabolic effects in bone. However, whether low-dose PTH promotes bone formation during senescence is unknown. To address this issue, we determined the effects of low-dose PTH and analysed the underlying mechanisms in prematurely senescent mice that display osteopenia. Treatment of 9-week-old Samp6 mice for 6 weeks with PTH at a standard dose (100 μg/kg per day) increased vertebral and femoral bone mass and improved bone microarchitecture as a result of increased bone-forming surfaces and mineral apposition rate (MAR). At a tenfold lower dose (10 μg/kg per day), PTH increased axial bone volume and trabecular thickness, as detected by bone histomorphometry but not by micro-computed tomography analysis. This anabolic effect resulted from increased osteoblast activity, as reflected by increased serum N-terminal propeptide of type 1 procollagen (P1NP) levels and MAR, with unchanged bone-forming surface or osteoblast surface. Mechanistically, low-dose PTH increased the expression of osteoblast markers in bone marrow stromal cells and mature osteoblasts, which was associated with increased expression of the Wnt effector Wisp1. Moreover, low-dose PTH decreased the expression of the Mef2c transcription factor, resulting in decreased Sost expression in osteoblasts/osteocytes. These results indicate that PTH at a low dose is effective at promoting bone formation and increased bone volume in senescent osteopenic mice through increased osteoblast activity and modulation of specific Wnt effectors, which raises the potential therapeutic use of intermittent PTH at low dose to increase bone forming activity and bone mass in skeletal senescence.

    • Received in final form 3 July 2014
    • Accepted 22 July 2014
    • Made available online as an Accepted Preprint 23 July 2014
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