While it is known that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and bone loss are related, almost all of the pathological mechanisms of COPD-related osteoporosis are unknown. A recent study by researchers in Japan established a COPD/emphysema-related osteoporosis mouse model by using elastase-induced emphysema.
A critical part of the study involved microCT scanning of the mouse model and determining key trabecular bone measurements. Analyze and the Bone Microarchitecture Analysis Add-On were used to establish bone microstructure parameters in the trabecular bone of L1 and the distal femoral metaphysis were evaluated. Specific parameters included trabecular bone volume (BV/TV: %), trabecular thickness (Tb.Th: mm), trabecular separation (Tb.Sp: mm), trabecular number (Tb.N: 1/mm), structure model index (SMI), and connectivity density (Conn.D: 1/mm3).
The study found that the lumbar vertebrae and femurs/tibiae of these models exhibited trabecular bone loss and impaired osteogenic activity in 24-week-old male elastase-induced emphysema model mice. In addition, the model mice showed atrophy of type I muscle fibers without atrophy of type II muscle fibers. The researchers concluded that emphysema may systemically induce bone/type I fiber loss and impair bone formation, and that the model they developed may be useful as a COPD/emphysema-related osteoporosis model in future drug discovery research.