Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Chemicals Could Lead To First Bone Growth Pill

Date:
March 22, 1999
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
New chemicals that, if successful, could become the first osteoporosis treatment to stimulate new bone growth -- rather than merely retard bone loss -- were described here today at a national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society. Researchers from the Seattle biotechnology company ZymoGenetics Incorporated said their new compounds are showing positive results in animals and, unlike other bone-growth candidates, can be put in a pill.

ANAHEIM, Calif., March 21 -- New chemicals that, if successful, could become the first osteoporosis treatment to stimulate new bone growth -- rather than merely retard bone loss -- were described here today at a national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society. Researchers from the Seattle biotechnology company ZymoGenetics Incorporated said their new compounds are showing positive results in animals and, unlike other bone-growth candidates, can be put in a pill.

In humans, bone undergoes continuous remodeling, with cells called osteoclasts "eating up"old bone as osteoblast cells replace it with new bone. Osteoporosis, which affects some 15-20 million Americans, is caused by increased bone breakdown without new bone formation. The result is a loss of bone mass and increased susceptibility to fractures, most commonly in those age 45 and older. The cost of treatments associated with osteoporosis in the U.S. has been estimated at $3.8 billion annually.

Current treatments, including estrogens, all act to decrease bone loss. They can't do anything about bone that is already gone and, therefore, are not helpful to everyone. "Our new bone forming agents may have better and more widespread utility for treatment of osteoporosis," said ZymoGenetics senior scientist Nand Baindur, Ph.D.

There are currently no drugs available to help grow bone. Researchers have tried giving patients proteins that the body naturally uses to stimulate osteoblasts, such as parathyroid hormone and bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs). But, according to Dr. Baindur, those clinical trials have been mostly unsuccessful or inconclusive. Furthermore, he explains that proteins are big molecules which can usually be given only by injection and don't hold up well in the body. Even if such treatments worked, he adds, the proteins are generally difficult to formulate and manufacture, tending to eventually make them expensive.

Instead of using the proteins themselves, Dr. Baindur's laboratory screened tens of thousands of compounds for the ability to stimulate BMPs. They have selected three -- two synthetic chemicals and one natural product -- for pre-clinical development, and early indications look promising. "This is the first report of small molecule drug-like compounds which have been shown to stimulate the formation of new bone in animals," says Dr. Baindur.

Such small molecule compounds are not only relatively inexpensive and easily made, but usually quite stable. Dr. Baindur adds that they can also be easily modified or formulated as the need arises. The new compounds should be able to be put into pill form. While no human tests have yet been conducted, Dr. Baindur says "these compounds are predicted to be useful in the clinical treatment of osteoporosis and related bone-deficit conditions, including bone fractures. As bone formation agents, they can potentially be given alone or in combination with agents which decrease bone loss."

While bone regenerating pills are probably years away from the market, there is the possibility that one of the new compounds might have a head start in clinical trials. The natural product candidate is part of a chemical class called statins, some of which are already in use for the treatment of heart disease.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "New Chemicals Could Lead To First Bone Growth Pill." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 March 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/03/990322060914.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (1999, March 22). New Chemicals Could Lead To First Bone Growth Pill. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/03/990322060914.htm
American Chemical Society. "New Chemicals Could Lead To First Bone Growth Pill." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/03/990322060914.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins