Inhibition of bone resorption by α‐difluoromethylornithine may not be mediated by polyamine depletion

Rita C. Lucas*, Jerome Seidenfeld, Nancy S. Krieger, Paula H. Stern

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We have examined the effect of α‐difluoromethylornithine (DFMO) on bone polyamine content and parathyroid hormone (PTH)‐ and calcitriol‐stimulated bone resorption in cultures of neonatal mouse calvaria. Polyamine content in bone homogenates was determined by reverse‐phase paired‐ion HPLC. Treatment with 5 mM DFMO for 48 h reduced putrescine from 0.4 nmol/bone to nondetectable levels, slightly decreased spermidine, and did not affect spermine. Bone resorption elicited by 48 h of treatment with PTH or calcitriol was inhibited by concentrations of DFMO ≥ 5 mM added 48 h prior to hormone. This observation supported the concept that polyamines may play a role in bone resorption. However, other observations cast uncertainty on this conclusion. Measurement of calvarial polyamine content at 2 h intervals revealed no increase in endogenous polyamines for up to 10.5 h after calcitriol addition. Although addition of putrescine restored bone polyamine content, exogenous polyamines failed to reverse the inhibitory effects of DFMO on calcitriol‐stimulated resorption. These results suggest that a mechanism other than depletion of polyamines could be contributing to the inhibitory effect of DFMO on resorption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)901-909
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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