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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2006, Vol. 4 ›› Issue (3): 303-306.doi: 10.3736/jcim20060317

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of soybean isoflavones on expression levels of osteoprotegerin and osteoprotegerin ligand mRNAs in bone tissues of ovariectomized rats

Qiang Wang1, Kun-zheng Wang1, Guang-ye Wang2   

  1. 1. Department of Orthopaedics, Second Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xian, Shaanxi Province 710004, China;
    2. Depar tment of Orthopaedics , Changhai Hospital, Second Military Medical University , Shanghai 200433 , China
  • Online:2006-05-31 Published:2006-05-15


To investigate the effects of soybean isoflavones (SI) on expression levels of osteoprotegerin (OPG) and osteoprotegerin ligand (OPGL) mRNAs in bone tissues of ovariectomized rats, and to discuss the mechanism of soybean isoflavaones in preventing and treating postmenopausal osteoporosis (PMO).


Thirty adult SD rats were randomly divided into 3 groups: sham-operation group, untreated group and SI-treated group. The rats in the last two groups were bilaterally ovariectomized. The bone density of L3 to L6 vertebrae was detected after 12-week intervention. Total RNA was extracted from femur head and the expression levels of OPG and OPGL mRNAs were examined by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction.


SI could increase the bone density of lumbar vertebrae in ovariectomized rats, up-regulate the expression level of OPG mRNA and down-regulate the ratio of OPGL mRNA/OPG mRNA, but exert no significant effect on the expression of OPGL mRNA.


The therapeutic effects of SI on PMO may be related to regulating the expression levels of OPG and OPGL mRNAs, and the ratio of OPGL mRNA/OPG mRNA.

Key words: Soybean isoflavones, Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal, Cytokines, Bone density

CLC Number: 

  • R681.4

Table 1

Primers for RTQ-PCR"

Target gene Forward primer Reverse primer Amplified fragment length Genbank number

Figure 1

Histological changes of femur head of left side in rats after 12-week intervention in the sham-operation(A), untreated(B) and SI-treated (C) groups (HE staining, phase-contrast microscope, 10×10)"

Table 2

Changes of bone density of L3-L6 vertebraein rats in three groups (ヌ±S)"

Group n Bone density
Sham-operation 10 0.335±0.006*
Untreated 10 0.304±0.006
SI-treated 10 0.315±0.017*

Table 3

Expression levels of OPG mRNA, OPGL mRNA and OPGL mRNA/OPG mRNA ratio in bone tissues of rats in three groups (ヌ±S)"

Sham-operation 10 1.000±0.35* 1.000±0.69* 1.000±0.32*
Untreated 10 0.119±0.04 6.162±4.70 47.796±21.88
SI-treated 10 0.695±0.40* 4.591±3.23 6.566±2.22*
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