Osteoprotegerin (OPG) is a recently discovered member of the TNF receptor superfamily that acts as an important paracrine regulator of bone remodeling. OPG knockout mice develop severe osteoporosis, whereas administration of OPG can prevent ovariectomy-induced bone loss. These findings implicate a role for OPG in the development of osteoporosis. In the present study, we screened the OPG gene promoter for sequence variations and examined their association with bone mineral density (BMD) in 103 osteoporotic postmenopausal women. Single-strand conformation polymorphism analysis followed by DNA sequencing revealed a presence of four nucleotide substitutions: 209 G-->A, 245 T-->G, 889 C-->T, and 950 T-->C. The frequencies of genotypes were as follows: GG (89.3%), GA (10.7%) for 209 G-->A polymorphism; TT (89.3%), TG (10.7%) for 245 T-->G polymorphism; and TT (25.2%), TC (53.4%), CC (21.4%) for 950 T-->C polymorphism. Substitution 889 C-->T was found in only two patients. Statistically significant association of genotypes with BMD at the lumbar spine (P = 0.005) was observed for 209 G-->A and 245 T-->G polymorphisms. Haplotype GATG was associated with lower BMD as compared with GGTT haplotype. Our results suggest that 209 G-->A and 245 T-->G polymorphisms in the OPG gene promoter may contribute to the genetic regulation of BMD.