In recent years, the number of patients with osteoporosis has risen with the increase in average longevity. Therefore, the chemoprevention of osteoporosis using food materials or food components has become an increasingly important target. Syringic acid (SA) is a phenolic compound present in the fruit of the açaí palm Euterpe oleracea and the mycelium of the shiitake mushroom Lentinula edodes. This compound has no affinity for estrogen receptors and is potentially useful for disease prevention. However, little is known about the effects of a SA diet on bone metabolism, particularly bone resorption in vivo. Here, we demonstrated the effects of a SA diet on bone loss and uterine weight loss in ovariectomized (OVX) mice. Ten-week-old OVX mice were fed SA-containing diets (100 mg/kg body weight/day) for 10 weeks. After 10 weeks of dietary SA, the body weight, food intake, and uterine weight of the OVX mice were unaffected; however, femoral bone mineral density (cortical bone density, cancellous bone density, and total bone density) was higher in the SA-fed groups than in the OVX-control group. Furthermore, histomorphometric analysis revealed that the number of osteoclasts and osteoblasts was decreased and increased, respectively, in the SA-fed groups. These results suggest that a SA diet suppresses bone loss by downregulating bone resorption and upregulating bone formation without affecting the uterus in OVX mice. Although further studies are needed, SA may be a compound that can be used to prevent or retard osteoporosis.
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This study has been in part funded and supported by the Strategic Project to Support the Formation of Research Bases at Private Universities: Matching Fund Subsidy from MEXT (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology), 2015–2018 (S1512004).
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