Droloxifene does not blunt bone anabolic effects of prostaglandin E2, but maintains prostaglandin E2-restored bone in aged, ovariectomized rats.Bone 1999; 24(1):41-7BONE
Droloxifene (DRO) is a selective estrogen receptor modulator that prevents bone loss by inhibition of bone turnover associated with estrogen deficiency in both growing and aged female rats. The purposes of this study were to test: (a) whether DRO can maintain prostaglandin E2 (PGE2)-restored bone after discontinuation of PGE2 in aged, ovariectomized (ovx) rats; (b) if an inhibition of bone turnover by DRO reduces bone anabolic effects of PGE2; and (c) whether bone mass restored by PGE2 plus DRO can be maintained after discontinuation of both agents. Female rats at 12 months of age were sham-operated (sham) or ovx. Three months postsurgery, ovx rats were treated with either PGE2 (3 mg/kg per day, subcutaneously [s.c.]) alone, or PGE2 plus DRO (10 mg/kg per day, per os [p.o.]) for 2 months. Thereafter, the PGE2 or PGE2 plus DRO treatment was withdrawn and the rats were then treated with either vehicle or DRO for another 1.5 months. Using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), total lumbar vertebral bone mineral density (LV-BMD) was determined in vivo at months 0, 3, 5, and 6.5. At the end of the study, the rats were autopsied, and BMD of total femur, femoral shaft, distal femoral metaphysis, and proximal femur was determined ex vivo by DXA. Standard static and dynamic bone histomorphometric parameters were determined on the fourth lumbar vertebral body (L-4). At 3, 5, or 6.5 months postsurgery, LV-BMD decreased significantly (-15%, -19%, and -19%, respectively) in the vehicle-treated ovx rats compared with sham. Beginning at 3 months post-ovx, PGE2 alone or in combination with DRO for 2 months completely restored LV-BMD back to the sham level. There was no difference in LV-BMD in PGE2 alone or PGE2 plus DRO. Upon cessation of PGE2 treatment, a significant decrease in LV-BMD was observed in the PGE2-alone group (-12%). On the other hand, when DRO treatment was given after discontinuation of PGE2, the PGE2-restored LV-BMD was completely maintained. In the PGE2 plus DRO group, no loss in LV-BMD was observed after cessation of either PGE2 alone or both PGE2 and DRO. However, treatment with DRO following 2 months of PGE2 plus DRO further increased LV-BMD (+10%). At the end of the study, ex vivo femoral BMD data confirmed the observation in lumbar vertebrae. Histomorphometric results of L-4 indicated that loss in bone mass after cessation of PGE2 in PGE2 alone group was associated with increased bone turnover. Treatment with DRO in the maintenance phase inhibited bone turnover and prevented bone loss induced by withdrawal of PGE2. Trabecular bone mass was maintained in the PGE2 plus DRO followed by vehicle group and further increased in the PGE2 plus DRO followed by DRO groups. We found that: (a) DRO is efficacious in maintaining PGE2-restored bone after discontinuation of PGE2; (b) DRO did not blunt the anabolic effects of PGE2; (c) bone loss occurred after cessation of treatment in the PGE2-alone group, whereas it was maintained after cessation of treatment in PGE2 plus DRO group; and (d) an additional anabolic effect was found in ovx rats treated with PGE2 plus DRO followed by DRO.