Endocrine Abstracts (2011) 26 P519

Trace elements and bone mineral density in pre- and postmenopausal women

Homayoun Sheikholeslami, Mahmood Gharbavi, Kamillia Kani & Sara Sheikholeslami


Qazvin University of Medical Sciences, Qazvin, Islamic Republic of Iran.


Introduction: In postmenopausal women the rate of bone remodeling increases. Trace elements are known to influence bone metabolism. The aim of the study was to assess serum concentrations of some elements in pre- and postmenopausal women with and without osteopenia.

Methods: Serum concentrations of magnesium, copper, cadmium and vanadium were measured by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy in 51 postmenopausal women (19 women with osteopenia and 32 with normal bone mineral density) and 29 age- and BMI-matched premenopausal women (12 women with osteopenia and 17 with normal bone mineral density). The diagnosis of osteopenia was based on assessment of bone mineral density (BMD) at the spine and proximal femur by dual-emission X-ray absorptiometry.

Results: Mean concentration of vanadium was significantly higher in postmenopausal than in premenopausal women. In addition, magnesium, copper and cadmium concentrations in postmenopausal women were lower than in premenopausal women, but with no significant differences. There were no statistically significant differences observed between the osteopenic and normal pre- and postmenopausal women with respect to magnesium, copper, cadmium and vanadium levels. In premenopausal women the serum level of copper was positively correlated with the T-score at the femoral neck and with the BMI.

Conclusion: The consequences of changes in bone turnover can be detected by increased levels of bone biomedical markers. Vanadium accumulates in bone, though its role on bone quality is not clear. Serum vanadium level might be a marker of bone turnover and its serum level may reflect processes related to bone resorption. Copper plays an important role in bone development in part due to its role as cofactor for various enzymes (lysyl oxidase and superoxide dismutase) required for the synthesis or modification of bone matrix. The results of study provide more evidence of a correlation between copper status and osteopenia.

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