Dietary countermeasure mitigates simulated spaceflight-induced osteopenia in mice

Sci Rep. 2020 Apr 16;10(1):6484. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-63404-x.


Spaceflight is a unique environment that includes at least two factors which can negatively impact skeletal health: microgravity and ionizing radiation. We have previously shown that a diet supplemented with dried plum powder (DP) prevented radiation-induced bone loss in mice. In this study, we investigated the capacity of the DP diet to prevent bone loss in mice following exposure to simulated spaceflight, combining microgravity (by hindlimb unloading) and radiation exposure. The DP diet was effective at preventing most decrements in bone micro-architectural and mechanical properties due to hindlimb unloading alone and simulated spaceflight. Furthermore, we show that the DP diet can protect osteoprogenitors from impairments resulting from simulated microgravity. Based on our findings, a dietary supplementation with DP could be an effective countermeasure against the skeletal deficits observed in astronauts during spaceflight.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Density / physiology
  • Bone Density / radiation effects
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / diagnosis
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / etiology
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / physiopathology
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / prevention & control*
  • Cosmic Radiation / adverse effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Food, Preserved
  • Hindlimb Suspension / adverse effects*
  • Hindlimb Suspension / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Prunus domestica*
  • Skeleton / diagnostic imaging
  • Skeleton / physiopathology
  • Skeleton / radiation effects
  • Space Flight*
  • X-Ray Microtomography