To clarify the mechanisms of altered bone repair in the diabetic state, we investigated RANK, RANKL and OPG expression by immunohistochemistry and RT-PCR in the fracture sites of rats that were either healthy or made diabetic by alloxan. Histomorphometric analysis of the fracture site at 7 days after fracture revealed that diabetic rats (db) have significantly less hard tissue formation at the fracture site, compared to controls. The number of RANK, RANKL and OPG positive cells was decreased in the db group; however, the RANKL/OPG ratio was similar in controls and db at this time. At day 14, numbers of RANKL and OPG positive cells and the mRNA expression for these markers were higher in the control group than in db (P = 0.008). The RANKL/OPG ratio in the db group was greater than in controls. Our results demonstrate an imbalance of RANKL/OPG expression associated with diabetes that may contribute to the delay of fracture repair during the course of diabetes.
RANK RANKL OPG Diabetes Facture repair
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The authors are grateful to Gabriela Mariângela Farias de Oliveira, Édelyn Cristina Nunes Silva and Renata Ribeiro de Souza for their helpful technical assistance. This work was supported by Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq).
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