The association between CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells and bone mineral density in Chinese women

  • Yong Zhu
  • Zhe Ruan
  • Zhangyuan Lin
  • Haitao Long
  • Ruibo Zhao
  • Buhua Sun
  • Liang Cheng
  • Lanhua Tang
  • Zhuying Xia
  • Changjun Li
  • Shushan ZhaoEmail author
Original Article


Osteoporosis is the most common bone disease in humans. During bone remodeling, specialized blood vessels influenced by the endothelial cells (CD31hiEmcnhi, also called type H cells) are formatted to supply nutrients. Reductions in vascular supply are associated with bone loss resulting in osteoporosis. Therefore, the objective of the present study was to explore the association between the CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells and bone mineral density (BMD). In this prospective study, 134 Chinese women were enrolled and examined. BMD was measured by DEXA method while the percentage of CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells in the intertrochanteric part was measured by flow cytometry. The percentage of CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells in postmenopausal subjects was significantly lower compared with premenopausal women (8.7 ± 4.0% vs 13.2 ± 5.6%, P < 0.01). Meanwhile, the CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cell levels in osteopenia and osteoporosis were significantly lower compared with subjects with normal BMD (9.84 ± 4.2% in osteopenia and 7.11 ± 3.2% in osteoporosis vs 12.7 ± 5.6% in subjects with normal T score, P < 0.01). Multiple regression analyses showed that the CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells level was positively associated with femur neck and total hip BMD, but not with lumbar BMD. Our study suggests a significantly positive association between CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells and local BMD in Chinese women. The proportion of CD31hiEmcnhi endothelial cells is a marker of bone quality and represents a potential target for treatment of bone loss.


CD31hiEmchhi endothelial cell Type H Bone mineral density Osteoporosis 



This work was supported by Hunan Provincial Natural Science Foundation (2016JJ6165).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in this study involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the Institutional Research and Ethical Committee of Xiangya Hospital and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments.

Informed consent

All the participants signed a written informed consent and the work was approved by the Ethics and Research Committee of the Xiangya Hospital.


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan KK, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yong Zhu
    • 1
  • Zhe Ruan
    • 1
  • Zhangyuan Lin
    • 1
  • Haitao Long
    • 1
  • Ruibo Zhao
    • 1
  • Buhua Sun
    • 1
  • Liang Cheng
    • 1
  • Lanhua Tang
    • 2
  • Zhuying Xia
    • 3
  • Changjun Li
    • 3
  • Shushan Zhao
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Orthopedics, Xiangya HospitalCentral South UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Oncology, Xiangya HospitalCentral South UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Department of Endocrinology, Endocrinology Research Center, Xiangya HospitalCentral South UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.National Clinical Research Center for Geriatric Disorders, Xiangya HospitalCentral South UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China

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