SGLT2 inhibitor therapy improves blood glucose but does not prevent diabetic bone disease in diabetic DBA/2J male mice

Kathryn M. Thrailkill, R. Clay Bunn, Jeffry S. Nyman, Mallikarjuna R. Rettiganti, Gael E. Cockrell, Elizabeth C. Wahl, Sasidhar Uppuganti, Charles K. Lumpkin, John L. Fowlkes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Persons with type 1 and type 2 diabetes have increased fracture risk, attributed to deficits in the microarchitecture and strength of diabetic bone, thought to be mediated, in part, by the consequences of chronic hyperglycemia. Therefore, to examine the effects of a glucose-lowering SGLT2 inhibitor on blood glucose (BG) and bone homeostasis in a model of diabetic bone disease, male DBA/2J mice with or without streptozotocin (STZ)-induced hyperglycemia were fed chow containing the SGLT2 inhibitor, canagliflozin (CANA), or chow without drug, for 10. weeks of therapy. Thereafter, serum bone biomarkers were measured, fracture resistance of cortical bone was assessed by μCT analysis and a three-point bending test of the femur, and vertebral bone strength was determined by compression testing. In the femur metaphysis and L6 vertebra, long-term diabetes (DM) induced deficits in trabecular bone microarchitecture. In the femur diaphysis, a decrease in cortical bone area, cortical thickness and minimal moment of inertia occurred in DM (p. <. 0.0001, for all) while cortical porosity was increased (p < 0.0001). These DM changes were associated with reduced fracture resistance (decreased material strength and toughness; decreased structural strength and rigidity; p < 0.001 for all). Significant increases in PTH (p < 0.0001), RatLAPs (p = 0.0002), and urine calcium concentration (p < 0.0001) were also seen in DM. Canagliflozin treatment improved BG in DM mice by ∼ 35%, but did not improve microarchitectural parameters. Instead, in canagliflozin-treated diabetic mice, a further increase in RatLAPs was evident, possibly suggesting a drug-related intensification of bone resorption. Additionally, detrimental metaphyseal changes were noted in canagliflozin-treated control mice. Hence, diabetic bone disease was not favorably affected by canagliflozin treatment, perhaps due to insufficient glycemic improvement. Instead, in control mice, long-term exposure to SGLT2 inhibition was associated with adverse effects on the trabecular compartment of bone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-107
Number of pages7
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Inc.


  • Canagliflozin
  • Cortical bone
  • Diabetic bone disease
  • Microarchitecture
  • Trabecular bone
  • Type 1 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Physiology
  • Histology


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