DOI: 10.1002/jbm4.10805 ISSN:

Lactobacillus Reuteri 6475 Prevents Bone Loss in a Clinically Relevant Oral Model of Glucocorticoid‐Induced Osteoporosis in Male CD‐1 Mice

Nicholas J Chargo, Jonathan D Schepper, Naoimy Rios‐Arce, Ho Jun Kang, Joseph D Gardinier, Narayanan Parameswaran, Laura R McCabe
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


Glucocorticoids (GCs) are commonly used anti‐inflammatory medications with significant side effects, including glucocorticoid‐induced osteoporosis (GIO). We have previously demonstrated that chronic subcutaneous GC treatment in mice leads to gut barrier dysfunction and trabecular bone loss. We further showed that treating with probiotics or barrier enhancers improves gut barrier function and prevents GIO. The overall goal of this study was to test if probiotics could prevent GC‐induced gut barrier dysfunction and bone loss in a clinically relevant oral‐GC model of GIO. Eight‐week‐old male CD‐1 mice were treated with vehicle or corticosterone in the drinking water for 4 weeks and administered probiotics Lactobacillus reuteri ATCC 6475 (LR 6475) or VSL#3 thrice weekly via oral gavage. As expected, GC treatment led to significant gut barrier dysfunction (assessed by measuring serum endotoxin levels) and bone loss after 4 weeks. Serum endotoxin levels significantly and negatively correlated with bone volume. Importantly, LR 6475 treatment effectively prevented both GC‐induced increase in serum endotoxin and trabecular bone loss. VSL#3 had intermediate results, not differing from either control or GC‐treated animals. GC‐induced reductions in femur length, cortical thickness, and cortical area were not affected by probiotic treatment. Taken together, these results are the first to demonstrate that LR 6475 effectively prevents the detrimental effects of GC treatment on gut barrier, which correlates with enhanced trabecular bone health in an oral mouse model of GIO. © 2023 The Authors. JBMR Plus published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Society for Bone and Mineral Research.

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