PTH and mechanical loading might act synergistically on bone formation. We tested the in vivo effect of the L-type voltage-sensitive calcium channel (VSCC) blocker, verapamil, on bone formation induced by human PTH-(1-34) (PTH) injection with or without mechanical loading. Adult rats were divided into eight groups: vehicle, verapamil, PTH, or verapamil plus PTH with or without mechanical loading. Verapamil (100 mg/kg) was given orally 90 min before loading. PTH (80 μg/kg) was injected sc 30 min before loading. Loading applied to tibia and ulna for 3 min significantly increased the bone formation rate on both the endocortical surface of tibia and the periosteal surface of ulna (P < 0.0001). Treatment with PTH enhanced load-induced bone formation by 53% and 76% (P < 0.001) on the endocortical and periosteal surfaces, respectively. Treatment with verapamil suppressed load-induced bone formation rate by 77% and 59% (P < 0.01). Furthermore, verapamil suppressed bone formation in rats subjected to PTH plus loading by 74% and 68% (P < 0.0001) at the tibia and ulna, respectively. In the groups without loading, neither verapamil nor PTH treatment significantly changed any bone formation parameter. This study indicates that L-type VSCCs mediate load-induced bone formation in vivo. Furthermore, PTH enhances load-induced bone adaptation through involvement of L-type VSCCs.
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