The purpose of this study was to examine the antiosteoporosis effects of garlic oil in an ovariectomized (Ovx) rat model of osteoporosis and to compare its efficacy with lovastatin (a synthetic hypocholesterolemic drug) and 17beta-estradiol (a potent antiosteoporotic agent). Animals were divided into five groups: sham-operated control, ovariectomized, ovariectomized supplemented with lovastatin, ovariectomized supplemented with garlic oil and ovariectomized supplemented with 17beta-estradiol. In our study, the development of a high rate of bone turnover and osteoporosis in the ovariectomized animals were confirmed by significant alterations of serum alkaline phosphatase activity, serum tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase activity, urinary excretion of calcium, phosphate, hydroxyproline and urinary calcium to creatinine ratio, when compared with the sham-operated control group. Supplementation of these animals with either garlic oil or lovastatin or 17beta-estradiol, in addition to their hypocholesterolemic effect, could counterbalance all these changes. The results revealed that all three compounds significantly protected the hypogonadal bone loss as reflected by higher bone densities and higher bone mineral contents than the ovariectomized group of animals. The results emphasize that, like 17beta-estradiol, the hypocholesterolemic compounds garlic oil and lovastatin are also effective in suppressing bone loss owing to estrogen deficiency and their efficacy in the order of lower to higher is garlic < lovastatin < 17beta-estradiol.
Copyright 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.