Histone deacetylase inhibitors as suppressors of bone destruction in inflammatory diseases

J Pharm Pharmacol. 2012 Jun;64(6):763-74. doi: 10.1111/j.2042-7158.2011.01421.x. Epub 2011 Dec 16.


Objectives: Despite progress in developing many new anti-inflammatory treatments in the last decade, there has been little progress in finding treatments for bone loss associated with inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and periodontitis. For instance, treatment of rheumatic diseases with anti-tumour necrosis factor-alpha agents has been largely successful in reducing inflammation, but there have been varying reports regarding its effectiveness at inhibiting bone loss. In addition, there is often a delay in finding the appropriate anti-inflammatory therapy for individual patients, and some therapies, such as disease modifying drugs, take time to have an effect. In order to protect the bone, adjunct therapies targeting bone resorption are being developed. This review focuses on new treatments based on using histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) to suppress bone loss in these chronic inflammatory diseases.

Key findings: A number of selected HDACi have been shown to suppress bone resorption by osteoclasts in vitro and in animal models of chronic inflammatory diseases. Recent reports indicate that these small molecules, which can be administered orally, could protect the bone and might be used in combination with current anti-inflammatory treatments.

Summary: HDACi do have potential to suppress bone destruction in chronic inflammatory diseases including periodontitis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / pharmacology
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Bone Resorption / etiology
  • Bone Resorption / prevention & control*
  • Bone and Bones / drug effects*
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / complications
  • Inflammation / drug therapy*
  • Osteoclasts / drug effects*
  • Periodontitis / complications
  • Periodontitis / drug therapy


  • Bone Density Conservation Agents
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors