Osteoporosis International

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 275–285 | Cite as

Age-related changes in biochemical markers of bone turnover and gonadotropin levels and their relationship among Chinese adult women

Original Article



The relationship between the levels of gonadotropic hormones and bone metabolism in Chinese adult women is unclear. Our research shows that a significant positive correlation exists between the levels of gonadotropic hormones and various bone turnover indicators. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) has been found to have a greater influence on all types of bone turnover indicator than luteinizing hormone (LH). Further, FSH has a greater influence on bone formation indicators than on bone resorption indicators.


The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between serum FSH and LH and biochemical markers of bone turnover in native Chinese adult women.


We conducted a cross-sectional study of 694 healthy Chinese women aged between 20 and 82 years. Serum FSH, LH, bone-specific alkaline phosphatase (BAP), osteocalcin (OC), N-terminal telopeptides of type I collagen, C-terminal telopeptides of type I collagen, urinary NTX, urinary CTX, and urinary deoxypyridinoline (uDPD) were determined.


All types of bone turnover indicator were significantly positively correlated with FSH (r = 0.164–0.626, all P = 0.000) and LH (r = 0.130–0.618, all P = 0.013–0.000). The correlation coefficient between serum FSH and BAP was the highest (r = 0.626), and that between serum FSH and uDPD was the lowest (r = 0.164). The serum gonadotropic hormone levels were higher; concentrations of bone turnover indicators were higher. The extent of the influence of FSH on various bone turnover indicators was approximately seven to 20 times greater than that of LH on these indicators. FSH could explain 43% and 22% of the changes in BAP and OC, respectively; whereas, LH could explain only 2.1% and 1.1%, respectively. FSH could explain approximately 1.9–11.8% of the changes in bone resorption indicators; however, LH had almost no effect on them.


Gonadotropic hormone levels are correlated with the rate of bone turnover in Chinese women: the higher the serum gonadotropic hormone levels in circulation, the higher the levels of bone turnover indicators. FSH has a greater influence on all types of bone turnover indicator than LH; moreover, it has a greater influence on bone formation indicators than on bone resorption indicators.


Bone formative markers Bone resorptive markers Follicle-stimulating hormone Luteinizing hormone Osteoporosis 



This work was supported by the Ministry of Health of the People’s Republic of China (No. 2004–468–50). The authors thank Dr. Peng-Fei Shan, Ms. Yin-Zhen Pi, and Mr. Tuan-Yu Fang for their assistance.

Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Metabolism and Endocrinology, The Second Xiang-Ya HospitalCentral South UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China

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