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Anat Cell Biol. 2017 Sep;50(3):219-229. doi: 10.5115/acb.2017.50.3.219. Epub 2017 Sep 20.

Protective effect of Rhus verniciflua Stokes extract in an experimental model of post-menopausal osteoporosis.

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Department of Anatomy, Konyang University College of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.
Department of Microbiology, Konyang University College of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.
Lifetree Co., Ltd., Suwon, Korea.
School of Life Sciences & Biotechnology, Korea University, Seoul, Korea.
Myunggok Research Institute, Konyang University College of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.


Post-menopausal osteoporosis (PMO) is a major global human health concern. Owing to the need for therapeutic drugs without side effects, natural extracts containing various polyphenolic compounds that may exert estrogenic effects have been studied in depth. Rhus verniciflua Stokes (RVS), which has been used as a traditional herbal medicine for centuries in Korea, was recently revealed to exert estrogenic effects attributable to its bioactive ingredients sulfuretin and butein, which have strong estrogen receptor-binding affinities. In this study, the protective potential of RVS in PMO was evaluated by using an experimental animal model of PMO, which was established by ovariectomy (OVX) of female Sprague Dawley rats. The oral administration of RVS at 20 mg/kg or 100 mg/kg for 8 weeks markedly protected against OVX-induced atrophy of the uterine tube and reversed the elevation in the ratio of serum receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand to osteoprotegerin, which is a marker of disease severity. In addition, RVS inhibited OVX-induced tibia bone loss, activated osteogenic activity, and suppressed osteoclastic activity in the tibial epiphyseal plate, a region of bone remodeling. Collectively, these factors indicated that the oral intake of RVS might be beneficial for the prevention of PMO.


Bone remodeling; Ovariectomy; Postmenopausal osteoporosis; Rhus verniciflua Stokes

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