Ethanolic extract of Actaea racemosa (black cohosh) potentiates bone nodule formation in MC3T3-E1 preosteoblast cells

Department of Medicine, Queen Mary Hospital, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China.
Bone (Impact Factor: 3.97). 06/2008; 43(3):567-73. DOI: 10.1016/j.bone.2008.04.018
Source: PubMed


Aceaea racemosa (formerly Cimicifuga racemosa, black cohosh, AR) extracts have been widely used as an alternative to hormonal replacement therapy for menopausal symptoms. Recent evidences suggest AR extracts are also effective in protecting against postmenopausal bone loss. To determine whether AR has any direct anabolic effect on osteoblasts, we investigated the ethanolic extract of AR on bone nodule formation in mouse MC3T3-E1 preosteoblast cells. AR did not stimulate osteoblast proliferation. Rather, at high doses of 1000 ng/mL for 48 h, AR suppressed (7.2+/-0.9% vs. control) osteoblast proliferation. At 500 ng/mL, a significant increase in bone nodule formation was seen with Von Kossa staining. Using quantitative PCR analysis, AR was shown to enhance the gene expression of runx2 and osteocalcin. Co-treatment with ICI 182,780, the selective estrogen receptor antagonist, abolished the stimulatory effect of AR on runx2 and osteocalcin gene induction, as well as on bone nodule formation in MC3T3-E1 cells. This is a first report of the direct effect of AR on enhancement of bone nodule formation in osteoblasts, and this action was mediated via an estrogen receptor-dependent mechanism. The results provide a scientific rationale at the molecular level for the claim that AR can offer effective prevention of postmenopausal bone loss.

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    • "been reported to be effective for bone metabolism based on the results obtained using MC3T3-E1 cell models from compounds and extract of plant herbs, such as Icariin (Zhao et al., 2010), Fructus psoraleae (Song et al., 2009), Actaea racemosa (Chan et al., 2008), safflower seeds (Kim et al., 2008), Ulmus davidiana planch (Kang et al., 2006), Drynaria fortunei (Jeong et al., 2004), Drynariae Rhizoma (Jeong et al., 2005) and Soybean isoflavones (Suh et al., 2003). Recently, plants used in folk medicine have been accepted as one of the main sources of drug discovery and development. "
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