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Endocrinology. 2000 Jul;141(7):2658-66.

Deficient mineralization of intramembranous bone in vitamin D-24-hydroxylase-ablated mice is due to elevated 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D and not to the absence of 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D.

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Genetics Unit, Shriners Hospital for Children, Montréal, Québec, Canada.


The 25-hydroxyvitamin D-24-hydroxylase enzyme (24-OHase) is responsible for the catabolic breakdown of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D [1,25(OH)2D], the active form of vitamin D. The 24-OHase enzyme can also act on the 25-hydroxyvitamin D substrate to generate 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, a metabolite whose physiological importance remains unclear. We report that mice with a targeted inactivating mutation of the 24-OHase gene had impaired 1,25(OH)2D catabolism. Surprisingly, complete absence of 24-OHase activity during development leads to impaired intramembranous bone mineralization. This phenotype was rescued by crossing the 24-OHase mutant mice to mice harboring a targeted mutation in the vitamin D receptor gene, confirming that the elevated 1,25(OH)2D levels, acting through the vitamin D receptor, were responsible for the observed accumulation of osteoid. Our results confirm the physiological importance of the 24-OHase enzyme for maintaining vitamin D homeostasis, and they reveal that 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D is a dispensable metabolite during bone development.

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