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J Bone Miner Res. 2012 Jun;27(6):1357-67. doi: 10.1002/jbmr.1588.

The gut microbiota regulates bone mass in mice.

Author information

1
Centre for Bone and Arthritis Research, Institute of Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy at University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden. Klara.Sjogren@medic.gu.se.

Abstract

The gut microbiota modulates host metabolism and development of immune status. Here we show that the gut microbiota is also a major regulator of bone mass in mice. Germ-free (GF) mice exhibit increased bone mass associated with reduced number of osteoclasts per bone surface compared with conventionally raised (CONV-R) mice. Colonization of GF mice with a normal gut microbiota normalizes bone mass. Furthermore, GF mice have decreased frequency of CD4(+) T cells and CD11b(+) /GR 1 osteoclast precursor cells in bone marrow, which could be normalized by colonization. GF mice exhibited reduced expression of inflammatory cytokines in bone and bone marrow compared with CONV-R mice. In summary, the gut microbiota regulates bone mass in mice, and we provide evidence for a mechanism involving altered immune status in bone and thereby affected osteoclast-mediated bone resorption. Further studies are required to evaluate the gut microbiota as a novel therapeutic target for osteoporosis.

Comment in

PMID:
22407806
PMCID:
PMC3415623
DOI:
10.1002/jbmr.1588
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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