Researchers at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine have found that thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) can promote bone growth independent of its usual thyroid functions — a breakthrough to future treatments for osteoporosis and other conditions involving bone loss, such as cancer.
The same researchers had previously found that TSH inhibits the creation of osteoclasts, a type of cell that removes bone tissue from the body.
They have now established for the first time that TSH also activates osteoblasts, which are cells responsible for bone formation.
“Osteoporosis is really an imbalance in the functions that create and destroy bone in the body,” said Mone Zaidi, MD, PhD, FRCP, FACE, Hon MD, Professor of Medicine, and Director of the Mount Sinai Bone Program, Mount Sinai School of Medicine.
“Our findings indicate that there may be a novel new method for addressing the lack of bone production. Our discovery that TSH causes bone growth also represents a new way of thinking about the role of certain glands and how they operate,” said Zaidi.
The findings were published online this week in the National Academy of Sciences journal PNAS.