Osteogenesis imperfecta, or brittle bone disease, occurs in about 1 in every 20,000 live births. This disease can be debilitating; the body has a difficult time forming new bones, and when bones do form, they aren’t very strong, so fractures are common. But now, there may be hope on the horizon for those suffering from brittle bone disease, and that hope comes from mice.

Researchers at the University of Michigan are working with a drug that has proven to be effective at promoting new bone growth in mice – and humans – with osteoporosis. They’re trying to find out whether or not this drug could work for brittle bone disease, as well. The drug inhibits a protein, called sclerostin, that is responsible for telling the body to stop producing new bone. By working with young mice, researchers are trying to understand the way this drug could affect the growing body as bone structures are still forming. The study results were promising, and scientists hope that this treatment could lead to new therapies for patients with brittle bone disease.

Read more about this research here.

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