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Bone. 2002 Jan;30(1):307-13.

Mechanism of circadian variation in bone resorption.

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  • 1Center for Clinical and Basic Research, Ballerup, Denmark.


The diurnal variation in bone resorption markers is poorly understood and may contain essential information about regulation of bone resorption. To explore the acute regulation of bone resorption we studied bone turnover in 14 postmenopausal women during a randomized, crossover, 24 h study of oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), normal diet, or fasting. Whereas fasting counteracted variation in bone resorption, as measured by serum C-telopeptide fragments of collagen type 1 degradation (s-CTx), OGTT and normal diet induced a 50% reduction (p < 0.001) over 2 h. For OGTT, s-CTx reverted to baseline levels after 6 h, and for normal diet s-CTx remained suppressed during the afternoon and returned to baseline overnight. Repeated OGTT at 8:00 A.M. and 8:00 P.M. in nine postmenopausal women demonstrated that identical reductions in s-CTx could be obtained at both timepoints with an intermediate return to baseline between tests. A 2 h randomized, crossover study of OGTT and fasting in 23 men and premenopausal women similarly revealed a 50% decrease in s-CTx. A randomized, crossover 2 h study of insulin tolerance test compared with fasting in six men and premenopausal women demonstrated a 20%-30% decrease in s-CTx (p < 0.01-0.05). Nine hour follow-up of ten healthy individuals during a crossover experiment of OGTT, protein, and fat intake revealed a comparable 50% reduction in s-CTx, but distinct profiles of serum glucose and serum insulin. Bone resorption was reduced by intake of food, glucose, fat, and protein and counteracted by fasting, and this seems to have been be independent of age and gender. Both exogenous and endogenous insulin stimulation tests induced a reduction in bone resorption, but this was only partial when compared with the reduction observed during food intake.

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