Section 11
Chapter 10,725

Greatly increased cancellous bone formation with rapid improvements in bone structure in the rat maternal skeleton after lactation

Bowman, B.M.; Siska, C.C.; Miller, S.C.

Journal of Bone and Mineral Research the Official Journal of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research 17(11): 1954-1960


ISSN/ISBN: 0884-0431
PMID: 12412802
DOI: 10.1359/jbmr.2002.17.11.1954
Accession: 010724290

There is a decrease in cancellous bone mass and strength during lactation but these are partially or completely reconstituted in the postlactational period. The purpose of this study was to determine changes in cancellous bone structure and formation after lactation in established breeder rats. For this, rats were taken at the end of the second pregnancy (Preg-2) and second lactation (Lac-2) and 2, 4, and 6 weeks after weaning. Nulliparous (NP) groups were included for comparisons. Bone structure was measured using morphometric methods and bone dynamics by histomorphometry. Tibial metaphyseal cancellous bone was lost during the first reproductive cycle, as expected, and again depleted during the Lac-2. Bone formation indices were elevated at the end of Lac-2, compared with those at the end of the second pregnancy or in the nulliparous animals. Within 2 weeks after the second weaning, the amount of double-labeled surface (dLS) increased approximately 800%, the mineralizing surface (MS) increased >400% with similar increases in bone formation rates (BFRs), compared with already elevated bone formation measured at the end of Lac-2. From 2 to 4 weeks after lactation, there were commensurate increases in cancellous bone mass and structural indices with essentially complete restoration of cancellous bone volume and structure compared with that measured at the end of Preg-2. The results show rapid and substantial increases in bone formation with reconstitution of cancellous bone mass and structure after lactation in rats. The skeletal changes that occur during the postlactational period may serve to prepare and protect the maternal skeleton for subsequent reproductive cycles.

PDF emailed within 0-6 h: $19.90