To investigate the therapeutic effects of Cistanche deserticola
Ma. extract (CDME) on
ovariectomy-induced osteoporosis in rats.
Female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to a control group and five
ovariectomy (OVX) subgroups, that is, OVX with vehicle (OVX), OVX with 17ß-estradiol (E2, 25
μg/kg/day), and OVX with CDME doses (40, 80, or 160 mg/kg/day). Daily oral administration of E2 or
CDME started 4 weeks after OVX and lasted for 16 weeks. Bone mineral density (BMD) of L4 vertebrae
and right femur of rats was estimated, The length of each femur was measured, and biochemical
analysis of serum and urine specimens were performed.
CDME dose-dependently inhibited the reduction in BMD of L4 vertebrae (0.23 ± 0.02 g/cm3, p
< 0.05) and femurs (0.20 ± 0.03 g/cm3, p < 0.05) caused by OVX and prevented the deterioration of
trabecular microarchitecture (p < 0.05), which were accompanied by a significant decrease in skeletal
remodeling (p < 0.05) as evidenced by the lower levels of bone turnover markers.
This study indicates that CDME prevents OVX-induced osteoporosis in rats, and could be
used for treating osteoporosis in elderly women.