Intrauterine growth restriction affects bone mineral density of the mandible and the condyle in growing rats

J Musculoskelet Neuronal Interact. 2022 Mar 1;22(1):93-101.


Objectives: To investigate in growing rats the effect of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) on the bone mineral density of the mandible and tibia, as well as the quality of the mandibular and condylar bone.

Methods: Twelve male rats were born IUGR by mothers sustaining 50% food restriction during pregnancy. Twelve control male rats were born by mothers fed ad libitum. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) of the tibia, proximal tibial metaphysis and the mandible, biochemical markers, histology and histomorphometrical analysis on the mandibular and subchondral bone of the condyle were performed.

Results: IUGR significantly affected bone mineral density (BMD) of both tibial and mandibular bones. IUGR rats had significantly lower osteocalcin values (p=0.021) and phosphorus (p=0.028), but not 25-OH vitamin D (p=0.352). Bone area percentage in the mandible was significantly lower (51.21±5.54) in IUGR compared to controls (66.00±15.49), and for subchondral bone of the condyle for IUGR (47.01±6.82) compared to controls (68.27±13.37). IUGR had a significant reduction in the fibrous layer, but not the proliferating layer, with the hypertrophic layer significantly increased.

Conclusion: Maternal restricted nutrition during gestation can affect BMD of the mandible and the tibia of the offspring animals.

Keywords: Bone Mineral Density; Condyle; IUGR; Mandible; Osteoporosis.

MeSH terms

  • Absorptiometry, Photon
  • Animals
  • Bone Density*
  • Female
  • Fetal Growth Retardation*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mandible / diagnostic imaging
  • Pregnancy
  • Rats
  • Tibia / diagnostic imaging