Monday February 19, 2018

Scientists discover new treatment for bone loss

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New York: Scientists from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), Florida, have developed a method to manipulate a protein that could result in the development of new bone-forming cells in patients suffering from bone loss.

The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, focused on a protein called PPARy (known as the master regulator of fat) and its impact on the fate of stem cells derived from bone marrow (mesenchymal stem cells).

Since these mesenchymal stem cells can develop into several different cell types — including fat, connective tissues, bone and cartilage — they have a number of potentially important therapeutic applications.

The scientists knew that a partial loss of PPARy in a genetically modified mouse model led to increased bone formation.

To see if they could mimic that effect using a drug candidate, the researchers designed a new compound that could repress the biological activity of PPARy.

The results showed that when human mesenchymal stem cells were treated with the new compound, which they called SR2595, there was a statistically significant increase in osteoblast formation, a cell type known to form bone.

“These findings demonstrate for the first time a new therapeutic application for drugs targeting PPARy, which has been the focus of efforts to develop insulin sensitisers to treat type 2 diabetes,” said Patrick Griffin, director of the Translational Research Institute at Scripps Florida.

“We have already demonstrated SR2595 has suitable properties for testing in mice. The next step is to perform an in-depth analysis of the drug’s efficacy in animal models of bone loss, ageing, obesity and diabetes,” Griffin added.

In addition to identifying a potential new therapeutic for bone loss, the study may have even broader implications.

“Because PPARG is so closely related to several proteins with known roles in disease, we can potentially apply these structural insights to design new compounds for a variety of therapeutic applications,” said David P. Marciano, first author of the study. (IANS)

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Researchers Identifies Causes of Osteoporosis in Older Adults

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Osteoporosis
Bone loss in adults. IANS

New York, Sep 25, 2017: Researchers have identified a mechanism that leads to bone loss in older adults, an advance that may help develop therapeutics to treat the age-associated bone loss condition.

Osteoporosis — the thinning of bone and the loss of bone density that increases the risk of fractures — is a major health problem in older people.

Often the condition is accompanied by an increase in fat cells in the bone marrow.

The study led by Yi-Ping Li, Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, found a protein called Cbf-beta which plays a critical role in maintaining the bone-producing cells.

Furthermore, the examination of aged mice showed dramatically reduced levels of Cbf-beta in bone marrow cells as compared to younger mice.

The findings showed when this mechanism malfunctions, progenitor cells stop creating bone-producing cells and instead create fat cells.

Thus, maintaining this Cbf-beta may be essential to prevent human age-associated osteoporosis that is due to elevated creation of fat cells, Li said.

The results were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Knowledge of this mechanism can provide targets in the search for novel bone-loss therapeutics to treat human osteoporosis with minimal side effects, the researchers noted. (IANS)

 

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