The Beneficial Effect of Proanthocyanidins and Icariin on Biochemical Markers of Bone Turnover in Rats

Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Sep 13;19(9):2746. doi: 10.3390/ijms19092746.


Nutrition is an important factor that influences bone metabolism, the endocrine and/or paracrine system, and bone-active mineral elements homeostasis. We studied antiosteoporotic effects of grape seed proanthocyanidins extract, icariin or alendronate (ALN) in retinoic acid-induced (13cRA) bone loss in rats. Proanthocyanidins and icariin have beneficial effects on bone health; they have improved the bone weight reduction, the length and the diameter of the bone, calcium, and phosphorus content in bone ash, bone mineral density (BMD), the biochemical markers of bone turnover and uterus atrophy induced by 13cRA. All results suggest that proanthocyanidins and icariin reverse osteoporosis in 13cRA rats by stimulating bone formation or regulating bone resorption by their antioxidative and estrogenic-like activity without toxic side-effects observed in ALN treatment.

Keywords: bone markers; icariin; proanthocyanidins; rats; retinoic acid-induced bone loss.

MeSH terms

  • Alendronate / pharmacology
  • Alendronate / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Bone Density / drug effects
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / pharmacology
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / therapeutic use
  • Bone Remodeling / drug effects
  • Bone Resorption / drug therapy*
  • Female
  • Flavonoids / pharmacology*
  • Flavonoids / therapeutic use*
  • Proanthocyanidins / pharmacology*
  • Proanthocyanidins / therapeutic use*
  • Rats


  • Bone Density Conservation Agents
  • Flavonoids
  • Proanthocyanidins
  • icariin
  • Alendronate