Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 27, Issue 1, pp 233–237 | Cite as

Bone maturation in the vitamin D, phosphate deficient rat and the response to acid loading

  • J. E. Russell
  • L. V. Avioli
Laboratory Investigations


Vitamin D and phosphate deficiency were produced in rats in order (a) to evaluate the degree of bone mineral and matrix maturation using a bromoform/toluene density gradient technique; and (b) to compare the aforementioned bone maturational changes due to vitamin D and phosphate deprivation to those produced with superimposed severe acidosis. Rats were fed a diet deficient in vitamin D and phosphorus (0.2%) from 3 weeks through 7 weeks of age. To examine the additional contribution of dietary calcium, we gave one-half of the animals either a low (0.06%) or high (1.3%) calcium diet. Following the 4 weeks of vitamin D deficiency, one-half of each group was given 1.8% NH4Cl in the drinking water for 4 succeeding days to induce an acute, severe acidosis. The degree of bone maturation was quantitated via bromoformtoulene density gradient fractionation; total mineral and hydroxyproline (collagen) levels were quantitated as well.

The vitamin D-deficient rats deprived of adequate dietary phosphate responded by conserving phosphorus, and as a consequence total bone phosphorus levels were maintained within that level for control rats. This conservation was independent of calcium intake but was extremely sensitive to acute acid loading, where a significant reduction in total bone phosphorus was noted.

The bone maturational profile obtained from the vitamin D-phosphate deficient rats, however, revealed a significant accumulation of less mature or dense bone collagen and mineral with a corresponding decrease in the most mature or dense moieties. In contrast to the reduction of the total bone phosphorus content by acute acidosis, the skeletal collagen-mineral maturational profile was not significantly affected by the short-term systemic acidosis.

The observed retardations in the bone collagen and mineral maturation of the vitamin D-deficient, phosphate-deprived state provide an additional observation which may well relate to the progressive osteopenia documented in states of chronic, mild acidosis.

Key words

Bone Vitamin D Acidosis Phosphate 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. E. Russell
    • 1
  • L. V. Avioli
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Bone and Mineral MetabolismWashington University School of Medicine, The Jewish Hospital of St. LouisSt. LouisUSA

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