JOURNAL ARTICLE

Supplementation with fish oil and genistein, individually or in combination, protects bone against the adverse effects of methotrexate chemotherapy in rats

Rethi Raghu Nadhanan, Jayne Skinner, Rosa Chung, Yu-Wen Su, Peter R Howe, Cory J Xian
PloS One 2013, 8 (8): e71592
23951199
Cancer chemotherapy has been shown to induce long-term skeletal side effects such as osteoporosis and fractures; however, there are no preventative treatments. This study investigated the damaging effects of anti-metabolite methotrexate (MTX) subcutaneous injections (0.75 mg/kg BW) for five days and the potential protective benefits of daily oral gavage of fish oil at 0.5 mL/100 g BW (containing 375 mg of n-3 PUFA/100 g BW), genistein (2 mg/100 g BW), or their combination in young adult rats. MTX treatment alone significantly reduced primary spongiosa height and secondary spongiosa trabecular bone volume. Bone marrow stromal cells from the treated rats showed a significant reduction in osteogenic differentiation but an increase in adipogenesis ex vivo. Consistently, stromal cells had significantly higher mRNA levels of adipogenesis-related proliferator activator activated receptor-γ (PPAR-γ) and fatty acid binding protein (FABP4). MTX significantly increased the numbers of bone-resorbing osteoclasts and marrow osteoclast precursor cell pool while significantly enhancing the mRNA expression of receptor activator for nuclear factor kappa B ligand (RANKL), the RANKL/osteoprotegerin (OPG) ratio, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in the bone. Supplementary treatment with fish oil and/or genistein significantly preserved trabecular bone volume and osteogenesis but suppressed MTX-induced adipogenesis and increases in osteoclast numbers and pro-osteoclastogenic cytokine expression. Thus, Fish oil and/or genistein supplementation during MTX treatment enabled not only preservation of osteogenic differentiation, osteoblast number and bone volume, but also prevention of MTX treatment-induced increases in bone marrow adiposity, osteoclastogenic cytokine expression and osteoclast formation, and thus bone loss.

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