Life scientists at University of California - Los Angeles have discovered a dramatic pattern of bone growth in female mice -- research that could potentially lead to stronger bone density in women and new treatments for osteoporosis in older women.
The researchers found that blocking a particular set of signals from a small number of neurons in the brain causes female, but not male, mice to build super-strong bones and maintain them into old age. In the 'game-changing' finding, bone mass rose 800 per cent after signals were blocked in brains of mice. The study was published in the journal Nature Communications. The researchers conducted experiments that zeroed in on a specific population of just a few hundred estrogen-sensitive brain cells which appeared to be responsible for increase in bone density. More than 200 million people worldwide suffer from osteoporosis, in which bones weaken and can easily fracture. Women are at relatively high risk of osteoporosis after menopause.