Future directions in osteoporosis therapeutics

Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2012 Sep;41(3):655-61. doi: 10.1016/j.ecl.2012.05.003. Epub 2012 Jun 28.


Future directions in osteoporosis treatment will include development of medications with increasingly precise mechanistic targets, including the RANK-ligand pathway, cathepsin K inhibition, and Wnt signaling manipulation. More gains are likely with anabolics and newer antiresorptives that cause little or no suppression of formation. Optimal treatment of osteoporosis may require coordination of anabolic and antiresorptive treatment, following stimulation of bone formation with consolidation and long-term maintenance. Some well-established drugs may be useful in such regimens. We can also anticipate emphasis on cost containment using currently available drugs, especially as they become generic. Effective implementation and treatment continuity will be important themes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anabolic Agents / pharmacology
  • Anabolic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / pharmacology
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Diphosphonates / pharmacology
  • Diphosphonates / therapeutic use
  • Drug Therapy, Combination / trends
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy / adverse effects
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy / trends
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy / trends
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / drug therapy*
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / prevention & control
  • Pharmacology, Clinical / trends*
  • RANK Ligand / antagonists & inhibitors


  • Anabolic Agents
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents
  • Diphosphonates
  • RANK Ligand