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Data of morphometric changes in ovariectomised and drug treated rats

In the first 4 weeks BV/TV rapidly decreased by 31% in the OVX animals, which gradually proceeded to 83% after 54 weeks. Bone loss started in the more centrally located trabecula. Besides bone loss, also new bone formation was observed at the endosteal cortex. Non-resorbed trabecula increased in thickness (from 139 mm to 153 mm) for all animals and even complete new trabecular structures were formed.

In the sham operated rats, BV/TV slowly decreased at all time points reaching a loss of 37% at week 54, while the thickness of the remaining trabecula increased, again for all animals.

The changes in bone structure for both groups followed a similar pattern. Decrease in bone volume was followed by an increase in trabecular thickness. The similarity between age related bone loss and bone loss caused by estrogen depletion might indicate that similar mechanisms are at work, and that estrogen depletion resulted in an increase in the speed at which these mechanisms inflict changes in the ovx group.

The fact that some trabecula increase in thickness while at the same time their neighbours are being resorbed raises questions on how bone cells sense spatial differences. The well-known mechanical responsiveness of bone might make it plausible that the mechanism at work is an ongoing mechanical adaptation of the bone.

Reported by

Dr. Molewaterplein 50
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