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Indian J Med Res. 2006 Apr;123(4):541-6.

Periodontal & systemic bone changes in rats with experimental lathyrism.

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  • 1Ondokuzmayis University, Faculty of Dentistry, Department of Periodontology, Samsun, Istanbul, Turkey.



It is not clear how lathyrism affects the systemic bone metabolism. We therefore undertook a study to observe periodontal and systemic bone changes by performing radiological, metabolic, and bone densitometric evaluations in rats with experimental lathyrism.


A total of 30 rats were used. Experimental lathyrism was induced by once daily subcutaneous administration of beta-aminopropionitrile (beta-APN), at a dose of 5 mg beta-APN/0.4 ml per 100 g of body weight for 40 days. After 40 days, vertebral bone mineral density was analyzed by means of dual energy X-ray absorbtiometry in both groups. Blood was drawn by cardiac puncture and the animals were decapitated. Serum calcium levels were measured. Right mandibles were removed and radiographs were obtained. Alveolar bone level was determined in the radiographs.


In all lathyritic rats, alveolar bone level was pathologically decreased with visible resorption. Vertebral bone mineral density values of lathyritic rats did not differ significantly from those of the control group. Compared to controls, there was a statistically significant decrease in serum calcium levels in the lathyritic group (P<0.001).


Significant alveolar bone resorption without alterations in vertebral bone mineral density indicated that lathyrogen administration for 40 days presumably has not caused systemic demineralization. This model could be used for studying the role of local and systemic agents on periodontal alveolar bone resorption.

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