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Spanish researchers work out how to slow down and reverse osteoporosis
23 January 2015 @ 17:19

SCIENTISTS from Barcelona and Madrid have discovered a way of reducing the risk of osteoporosis and slowing down the process in the early stages following diagnosis by reinforcing bone mass.

Researchers from the National Cardio-Vascular Investigation Centre (CNIC) in the two cities, together with their counterparts in Belgium and France have discovered a way of monitoring the cells which 'eat' bone mass.

They are studying the use of a drug normally employed in treating surface lymphomas - Bexarotene - as a way of blocking the formation of osteoclasts, the cells which 'attack' bone mass.

According to the team led by Dr Mercedes Ricote, whose main researchers are Dr María Piedad Menéndez and Dr Tomás Roszer, the formation and spread of osteoclasts can be controlled by a protein found in the bone cells known as a retinoid X-receptor, or RXR, which carries vitamin A derivatives and lipids, or fat cells.

RXR controls the development, immunity and metabolism of bone cells as well as the presence of a key molecule, known as a MAFB, which generates osteoclasts.

Laboratory tests on genetically-modified mice has shown that the loss of RXR gives rise to 'gigantic' osteoclasts, and have worked out how to control the 'bone-eating' function in these by doctoring the amount of RXR fed into them.

 

Read more at thinkSPAIN.com



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