Researchers have developed a new class of compound that has shown promise in treating both diabetes and bone disease.
In addition to its more obvious ills, Type-2 diabetes is a condition closely associated with bone fractures, increasing the risk of fractures twofold. To make matters worse, certain anti-diabetic drugs further increase this risk, particularly in postmenopausal women, severely limiting their treatment options.
But the new dual-targeting drug candidate, referenced as "SR10171.", could treat both diabetes and bone disease.
"SR10171 improves bone mass regardless of body mass index, normal to obese," said co-lead researcher Patrick Griffin, professor at the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in the US.
"So you could use such a drug to treat osteoporosis whether patients are diabetic or not," Griffin added.
The drug increases bone mass by expanding bone formation (deposition of new bone) and bone turnover (a normal process of replacement of old bone).
A proper balance of these two processes is critical to healthy bone maintenance, and this balance is frequently negatively affected in diabetic patients.
In animal models treated with the compound, fat formation in the bone marrow was successfully blocked independent of their metabolic state (healthy or diabetic), showed the study published online in the journal EbioMedicine.