Mechanisms of impaired bone strength in type 1 and 2 diabetes

D. Merlotti, L. Gennari, F. Dotta, D. Lauro, R. Nuti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Diabetes and osteoporosis are common and complex disorders with an enormous health burden that can be often associated especially in middle-age and elderly individuals. Although there is raising awareness of the higher fractures rates among patients with type 1 (DM1) and 2 (DM2) diabetes, there are few data available on the pathogenetic mechanisms responsible for this increased risk. Importantly, several experimental and clinical observations suggest that bone abnormalities associated with diabetes may differ, at least in part, from those associated with senile or post-menopausal osteoporosis. This implies that specific preventive and therapeutic strategies have to be developed and tested to prevent fractures in DM1 and DM2 patients. It is also likely that shared (i.e. due to glucose-toxicity) as well as different (i.e. due to insulin levels or other hormones) mechanisms may be associated with bone fragility in DM1 and DM2. Moreover, the hypothesis of an endocrine role of the skeleton in the regulation of glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity has been recently proposed by experimental observations. This review summarizes the recent clinical and experimental advances on glucose tolerance, bone fragility and osteoporosis associated with diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)683-690
Number of pages8
JournalNutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2010


  • Bone strength
  • Diabetes
  • Fracture
  • Glucose-toxicity
  • Osteoporosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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