Intermittently administered parathyroid hormone 1-34 reverses bone loss and structural impairment in orchiectomized adult rats

Yankel Gabet, David Kohavi, Ralph Müller, Michael Chorev*, Itai Bab

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Male osteoporosis is emerging as a central theme in bone research. As in females, hypogonadism appears as a principal risk factor in men that leads to bone loss and increased fracture incidence. Intermittently administered parathyroid hormone (PTH) reverses bone loss in sex hormone-deprived women and female animals and increases bone mass in elderly men and normal male animals. This study was carried out to assess whether the PTH anabolic activity is also effective in adult castrated males and to gain insight into the underlying tissue processes. Bilateral orchiectomy (ORX) or sham-ORX was performed in 13-week old rats. Five weeks later, the ORX rats were treated intermittently with human PTH(1-34), 80 μg/kg/day or vehicle for 6 weeks. Femora were evaluated by quantitative micro-computed tomography followed by dynamic histomorphometry. The trabecular bone volume density showed 40% and 56% ORX-induced loss in the distal metaphysis at 6 weeks and 12 weeks post-ORX, respectively. PTH(1-34) induced supraphysiologic recovery of this bone loss (155% recovery) consequent to a vast increase in trabecular thickness (174% over sham-ORX controls) and a partial reversal (62%) of the decrease in trabecular number. As compared with the results in 12-week, orchiectomized vehicle-administered rats, the PTH(1-34) treatment induced a significant decrease in osteoclast number (20%) and twofold increase in bone formation rate. While ORX did not affect the femoral diaphysis, PTH(1-34) induced marked cortical thickening via the stimulation of endosteal mineral appositional rate (154% over ORX rats). These data portray PTH(1-34) as a highly potent bone anabolic agent in adult ORX rats, mainly by increasing both the trabecular and cortical thicknesses through its effect on osteoblasts and osteoclasts. The adult ORX rat is useful for investigating the processes involved in bone anabolic activity in castrated osteoporotic males and for the development of bone anabolic agents for treating this condition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1436-1443
Number of pages8
JournalOsteoporosis International
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Bone anabolic agents
  • Bone loss
  • Orchiectomy
  • Osteoporosis
  • Parathyroid hormone


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