I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 Nov 2023 - 17 Nov 2023

2023 Nov 15

Sci Transl Med




Parathyroid hormone treatment partially reverses endplate remodeling and attenuates low back pain in animal models of spine degeneration.


Ling Z, Crane J, Hu H, Chen Y, Wan M, Ni S, Demehri S, Mohajer B, Peng X, Zou X, Cao X


Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most prevalent diseases affecting quality of life, with no disease-modifying therapy. During aging and spinal degeneration, the balance between the normal endplate (EP) bilayers of cartilage and bone shifts to more bone. The aged/degenerated bony EP has increased porosity because of osteoclastic remodeling activity and may be a source of LBP due to aberrant sensory innervation within the pores. We used two mouse models of spinal degeneration to show that parathyroid hormone (PTH) treatment induced osteogenesis and angiogenesis and reduced the porosity of bony EPs. PTH increased the cartilaginous volume and improved the mechanical properties of EPs, which was accompanied by a reduction of the inflammatory factors cyclooxygenase-2 and prostaglandin E. PTH treatment furthermore partially reversed the innervation of porous EPs and reversed LBP-related behaviors. Conditional knockout of PTH 1 receptors in the nucleus pulposus (NP) did not abolish the treatment effects of PTH, suggesting that the NP is not the primary source of LBP in our mouse models. Last, we showed that aged rhesus macaques with spontaneous spinal degeneration also had decreased EP porosity and sensory innervation when treated with PTH, demonstrating a similar mechanism of PTH action on EP sclerosis between mice and macaques. In summary, our results suggest that PTH treatment could partially reverse EP restructuring during spinal regeneration and support further investigation into this potentially disease-modifying treatment strategy for LBP.