A role of COX-2 in pathological bone destruction and fracture repair has been established; however, few studies have been conducted to examine the involvement of COX-2 in maintaining bone mineral density and bone micro-architecture. In this study, we examined bone morphology in multiple trabecular and cortical regions within the distal and diaphyseal femur of 4-month-old wild-type and COX-2-/- mice using micro-computed tomography. Our results demonstrated that while COX-2-/- female mice had normal bone geometry and trabecular microarchitecture at 4 months of age, the male knockout mice displayed reduced bone volume fraction within the distal femoral metaphysis. Furthermore, male COX-2-/- mice had a significant reduction in cortical bone mineral density within the central cortical diaphysis and distal epiphysis and metaphysis. Consistent with the observed reduction in cortical mineral density, biomechanical testing via 4-point-bending showed that male COX-2-/- mice had a significant increase in postyield deformation, indicating a ductile bone phenotype in male COX-2-/- mice. In conclusion, our study suggests that genetic ablation of COX-2 may have a sex-related effect on cortical bone homeostasis and COX-2 plays a role in maintaining normal bone micro-architecture and density in mice.
- Bone mineral density (BMD)
- Postyield deflection (YPD)