2007 Volume 46 Issue 24 Pages 1967-1974
Object No consensus has been reached whether clinical use of statins has beneficial effects on bone health, partly due to lower statin concentrations because of first-pass metabolism by the liver. We thus evaluated the effects of pitavastatin, which does not undergo first-pass metabolism, on bone metabolism.
Methods According to the therapeutic regimen, the subjects were divided into two groups (group A, 66 with pitavastatin; group B, 35 without pitavastatin). Bone-specific alkaline phosphatase (BAP) and serum N-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen (NTx) as bone turnover markers (BTMs) were compared between the two groups and between at baseline and after 3 months of treatment in each group. Correlations between baseline characteristics and ΔBTMs, and between Δlipid profile and ΔBTMs were investigated using both Pearson's correlation analysis and multivariate analysis.
Patients The subjects were 101 patients with untreated hypercholesterolemia.
Results After 3 months of treatment, BAP in group A did not change significantly compared with either the baseline value or that in group B. However, NTx in group A significantly decreased compared with both the baseline value and that in group B. In addition, ΔNTx was negatively correlated with NTx at baseline, and the significance of this correlation persisted after multiple regression analysis.
Conclusion Our findings suggest that pitavastatin may have potentially beneficial effects on bone metabolism primarily by reducing bone resorption rather than by stimulating bone formation. Further studies with more patients and longer duration are warranted to evaluate its effects, if any, on prevention of osteoporosis and subsequent fractures.