Neonatal reductions in osteoclast number and function account for the transient nature of osteopetrosis in the rat mutation microphthalmia blanc (mib)

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Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Cell Biology; Department of Anatomy

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Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


We have examined the general and skeletal manifestations of osteopetrosis in a new, mild osteopetrotic mutation in the rat, microphalmia blanc (mib). Newborn mutant (mib) rats exhibit the typical skeletal deformities and sclerosis of osteopetrosis at birth, which are reduced significantly during the first postnatal month but don't disappear entirely up to 8 months later. Osteoclast numbers, staining for TRAP and TraATPase, and bone resorption are reduced in mutants during the first 2 postnatal weeks but improve by 1 month. In mutants, serum concentrations of calcium and phosphorus are normal, but 1,25(OH)2 D levels are higher at 1 week than those in normal littermates. Neonatally, mutants exhibit extramedullary hemopoiesis in the spleen. These results are interpreted to mean that the transient perinatal skeletal sclerosis in mib rats is caused by reduced production and function of osteoclasts in this period. The recent description of transient, perinatal osteopetrosis in a child suggests that analyses of the early differences between mild and severe animal mutations might distinguish those children with osteopetrosis who need treatment from those who do not.


Bone. 1994 Nov-Dec;15(6):707-15.

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