Journal of Bone and Mineral Research vol:7 issue:12 pages:1407-15
The effects of androgen and estrogen deficiency on skeletal homeostasis were studied in the guinea pig. Male and female adult (7 months old) guinea pigs were either sham operated (9 females and 7 males) or gonadectomized [9 ovariectomized (OVX) females and 6 orchidectomized (ORX) males] and sacrificed 4 months later for evaluation of bone mass, bone turnover, and serum calcium homeostasis. Parameters of bone turnover, calcium homeostasis, and vitamin D metabolites were similar in all groups except for increased serum IGF-I concentrations (+30%) in males compared to females. Gonadectomy resulted in a 50% decrease in serum IGF-I concentrations in males only (p < 0.001). Volume, total calcium content, and cortical density of the tibia were significant higher in males than in females. Estrogen deficiency had no effect on bone volume or calcium content. Androgen deficiency resulted in a significant lower volume and calcium content of the tibia and in a lower calcium content of the distal lumbar vertebrae. Single-photon absorptiometry of the tibia showed that only cortical, not trabecular bone density of the tibia was decreased after ORX. Histomorphometric studies of the tibial metaphysis also did not show significant differences in trabecular bone volume between sham-operated and ORX males. We conclude that in adult male guinea pigs androgen deficiency results in a decrease in (cortical) bone volume and content concomitant with decreased IGF-I levels. In female guinea pigs of the same age, estrogen deficiency did not affect total or regional bone mass.