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Concept: Calcitonin


OBJECTIVE: The 1-34 amino acid segment of the parathyroid hormone (PTH [1-34]) mediates anabolic effects in chondrocytes and osteocytes. The aim of this study was to investigate whether systemic application of PTH [1-34] improves the repair of non-osteoarthritic, focal osteochondral defects in vivo. DESIGN: Standardized cylindrical osteochondral defects were bilaterally created in the femoral trochlea of rabbits (n = 8). Daily subcutaneous injections of 10 μg PTH [1-34]/kg were given to the treatment group (n = 4) for 6 weeks, controls (n = 4) received saline. Articular cartilage repair was evaluated by macroscopic, biochemical, histological and immunohistochemical analyses. Reconstitution of the subchondral bone was assessed by micro-computed tomography. Effects of PTH [1-34] on synovial membrane, apoptosis, and expression of the PTH receptor (PTH1R) were determined. RESULTS: Systemic PTH [1-34] increased PTH1R expression on both, chondrocytes and osteocytes within the repair tissue. PTH [1-34] ameliorated the macro- and microscopic aspect of the cartilaginous repair tissue. It also enhanced the thickness of the subchondral bone plate and the microarchitecture of the subarticular spongiosa within the defects. No significant correlations were established between these coexistent processes. Apoptotic levels, synovial membrane, biochemical composition of the repair tissue, and type-I/II collagen immunoreactivity remained unaffected. CONCLUSIONS: PTH [1-34] emerges as a promising agent in the treatment of focal osteochondral defects as its systemic administration simultaneously stimulates articular cartilage and subchondral bone repair. Importantly, both time-dependent mechanisms of repair did not correlate significantly at this early time point and need to be followed over prolonged observation periods.

Concepts: Autologous chondrocyte implantation, Calcitonin, Extracellular matrix, Collagen, Articular cartilage repair, Parathyroid hormone, Cartilage, Bone


BACKGROUND: Until now the exact biochemical processes during healing of metaphyseal fractures of healthy and osteoporotic bone remain unclear. Especially the physiological time courses of 25(OH)D3 (Vitamin D) as well as PTH (Parathyroid Hormone) the most important modulators of calcium and bone homeostasis are not yet examined sufficiently. The purpose of this study was to focus on the time course of these parameters during fracture healing. METHODS: In the presented study, we analyse the time course of 25(OH)D3 and PTH during fracture healing of low BMD level fractures versus normal BMD level fractures in a matched pair analysis. Between March 2007 and February 2009 30 patients older than 50 years of age who had suffered a metaphyseal fracture of the proximal humerus, the distal radius or the proximal femur were included in our study. Osteoporosis was verified by DEXA measuring. The time courses of 25(OH)D3 and PTH were examined over an eight week period. Friedmann test, the Wilcoxon signed rank test and the Mann-Withney U test were used as post-hoc tests. A p-value <= 0.05 was considered significant. RESULTS: Serum levels of 25(OH)D3 showed no differences in both groups. In the first phase of fracture healing PTH levels in the low BMD level group remained below those of the normal BMD group in absolute figures. Over all no significant differences between low BMD level bone and normal BMD level bone could be detected in our study. CONCLUSIONS: The time course of 25(OH)D3 and PTH during fracture healing of patients with normal and low bone mineral density were examined for the first time in humans in this setting and allowing molecular biological insights into fracture healing in metaphyseal bones on a molecural level. There were no significant differences between patients with normal and low BMD levels. Hence further studies will be necessary to obtain more detailed insight into fracture healing in order to provide reliable decision criteria for therapy and the monitoring of fracture healing.

Concepts: Calcium, Hyperparathyroidism, Bone fracture, Calcitonin, Parathyroid hormone, Vitamin D, Osteoporosis, Bone


Fremanezumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody targeting calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), is being investigated as a preventive treatment for migraine. We compared two fremanezumab dose regimens with placebo for the prevention of chronic migraine.

Concepts: Immune system, Immunohistochemistry, Protein, Telcagepant, Nomenclature of monoclonal antibodies, Calcitonin, Calcitonin gene-related peptide, Monoclonal antibodies


Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to an increased risk of osteoporosis. Vitamin D deficiency has reached high levels in the Saudi population, but there is conflicting evidence both in the Saudi population, and worldwide, regarding the existence of a correlation between these low vitamin D levels and reduced BMD (bone mineral density), or osteoporosis.

Concepts: ARIA Charts, Calcitonin, Vitamins, Calcium, Bone, Bone density, Osteoporosis, Vitamin D


We tested erenumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor, for the prevention of episodic migraine.

Concepts: Cell signaling, Monoclonal antibody therapy, Migraine, Calcitonin, Immune system, Protein, Calcitonin gene-related peptide, Monoclonal antibodies


Parathyroid hormone (PTH) activates receptors on osteocytes to orchestrate bone formation and resorption. Here we show that PTH inhibition of SOST (sclerostin), a WNT antagonist, requires HDAC4 and HDAC5, whereas PTH stimulation of RANKL, a stimulator of bone resorption, requires CRTC2. Salt inducible kinases (SIKs) control subcellular localization of HDAC4/5 and CRTC2. PTH regulates both HDAC4/5 and CRTC2 localization via phosphorylation and inhibition of SIK2. Like PTH, new small molecule SIK inhibitors cause decreased phosphorylation and increased nuclear translocation of HDAC4/5 and CRTC2. SIK inhibition mimics many of the effects of PTH in osteocytes as assessed by RNA-seq in cultured osteocytes and following in vivo administration. Once daily treatment with the small molecule SIK inhibitor YKL-05-099 increases bone formation and bone mass. Therefore, a major arm of PTH signalling in osteocytes involves SIK inhibition, and small molecule SIK inhibitors may be applied therapeutically to mimic skeletal effects of PTH.

Concepts: Signal transduction, Calcitonin, Bone resorption, Enzyme inhibitor, Skeletal system, Osteoclast, Parathyroid hormone, Bone


Osteoporosis affects more than 200 million people worldwide leading to more than 2 million fractures in the US alone. Unfortunately, surgical treatment is limited in patients with low bone mass. Parathyroid hormone (PTH) was shown to induce fracture repair in animals by activating mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). However it would be less effective in patients with fewer and/or dysfunctional MSCs due to aging and comorbidities. To address this, we evaluated the efficacy of combination intravenous MSC and PTH therapy versus monotherapy and untreated controls, in a rat model of osteoporotic vertebral bone defects. The results demonstrated that combination therapy significantly increased new bone formation versus monotherapies and no treatment by 2 weeks (p<0.05). Mechanistically, we found that PTH significantly enhanced MSC migration to the lumbar region, where the MSCs differentiated into bone-forming cells. Finally, we used allogeneic porcine MSCs and observed similar findings in a clinically relevant minipig model of vertebral defects. Collectively, these results demonstrate that in addition to its anabolic effects, PTH functions as an adjuvant to intravenous MSC therapy by enhancing migration to heal bone loss. This systemic approach could be attractive for various fragility fractures, especially using allogeneic cells that do not require invasive tissue harvest.Molecular Therapy (2015); doi:10.1038/mt.2015.211.

Concepts: Osteoclast, Hyperparathyroidism, Bone marrow, Mesenchymal stem cell, Vitamin D, Calcitonin, Bone, Osteoporosis


Adaptor protein-2 (AP2), a central component of clathrin-coated vesicles (CCVs), is pivotal in clathrin-mediated endocytosis, which internalizes plasma membrane constituents such as G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). AP2, a heterotetramer of α, β, μ and σ subunits, links clathrin to vesicle membranes and binds to tyrosine- and dileucine-based motifs of membrane-associated cargo proteins. Here we show that missense mutations of AP2 σ subunit (AP2S1) affecting Arg15, which forms key contacts with dileucine-based motifs of CCV cargo proteins, result in familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia type 3 (FHH3), an extracellular calcium homeostasis disorder affecting the parathyroids, kidneys and bone. We found AP2S1 mutations in >20% of cases of FHH without mutations in calcium-sensing GPCR (CASR), which cause FHH1. AP2S1 mutations decreased the sensitivity of CaSR-expressing cells to extracellular calcium and reduced CaSR endocytosis, probably through loss of interaction with a C-terminal CaSR dileucine-based motif, whose disruption also decreased intracellular signaling. Thus, our results identify a new role for AP2 in extracellular calcium homeostasis.

Concepts: Calcitonin, Cell biology, G protein-coupled receptor, Endocytosis, Membrane biology, Calcium-sensing receptor, Signal transduction, Cell membrane


Hungry bone syndrome refers to the rapid, profound and prolonged hypocalcaemia associated with hypophosphataemia and hypomagnesaemia and exacerbated by suppressed parathyroid hormone levels, which follows parathyroidectomy in patients with severe primary hyperparathyroidism and preoperative high bone turnover. It is a relatively uncommon, but serious adverse effect of parathyroidectomy. We conducted a literature search of all available studies reporting a “hungry bone syndrome” in patients who had a parathyroidectomy for primary hyperparathyroidism, to identify patients at risk and address the pitfalls in their management. The severe hypocalcaemia is believed to be due to increased influx of calcium into bone, due to the sudden removal of the effect of high circulating levels of PTH on osteoclastic resorption, leading to a decrease in the activation frequency of new remodelling sites and to a decrease in remodelling space, although there is no good documentation for this. Various risk factors have been suggested for the development of a hungry bone syndrome, including older age, weight/volume of the resected parathyroid glands, radiological evidence of bone disease and vitamin D deficiency. The syndrome is reported in 25-90% of patients with radiological evidence of hyperparathyroid bone disease versus only 0-6% of patients without skeletal involvement. There is insufficient data-based evidence on the best means to treat, minimize or prevent this severe complication of parathyroidectomy. Treatment is aimed at replenishing the severe calcium deficit by using high doses of calcium supplemented by high doses of active metabolites of vitamin D. Adequate correction of magnesium deficiency and normalization of bone turnover are required for resolution of the hypocalcaemia which may last for a number of months after successful surgery. Pre-operative treatment with bisphosphonates has been suggested to reduce postoperative hypocalcaemia, but there are to date no prospective studies addressing this issue.

Concepts: Parathyroid gland, Calcitonin, Hypoparathyroidism, Osteoporosis, Hyperparathyroidism, Bone, Vitamin D, Parathyroid hormone


Application of cannabinoids and endocannabinoids to perfused vascular beds or individual isolated arteries results in changes in vascular resistance. In most cases, the result is vasorelaxation, although vasoconstrictor responses are also observed. Cannabinoids also modulate the actions of vasoactive compounds including acetylcholine, methoxamine, angiotensin II and U46619 (thromboxane mimetic). Numerous mechanisms of action have been proposed including receptor activation, potassium channel activation, calcium channel inhibition and the production of vasoactive mediators such as calcitonin gene-related peptide, prostanoids, nitric oxide, endothelial-derived hyperpolarising factor and hydrogen peroxide. The purpose of this review is to examine the evidence for the range of receptors now known to be activated by cannabinoids. Direct activation by cannabinoids of CB1 , CBe , TRPV1 (and potentially other TRP channels) and PPARs in the vasculature has been observed. A potential role for CB2, GPR55 and 5HT1A has also been identified in some studies. Indirectly, activation of prostanoid receptors (TP, IP, EP1 and EP4 ) and the CGRP receptor are involved in the vascular responses to cannabinoids. The majority of this evidence has been obtained through animal research, but recent work has confirmed some of these targets in human arteries. Vascular responses to cannabinoids are enhanced in hypertension and cirrhosis, but are reduced in obesity and diabetes, both due to changes in the target sites of action. Much further work is required to establish the extent of vascular actions of cannabinoids and the application of this research in physiological and pathophysiological situations.

Concepts: Calcitonin, Oxygen, Blood pressure, Cardiovascular system, Ion channel, Calcitonin gene-related peptide, Nitric oxide, Cannabinoid receptor