Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of Fructus Ligustri Lucidi (FLL) and Puerariae radix (PR) combination treatment in bone and mineral metabolism in ovariectomized (OVX) rats in our search for an alternative regimen for the management of postmenopausal osteoporosis.
Methods: Six-month-old OVX rats were used as postmenopausal osteoporotic models, and PR water extract (PR) and FLL water extract (WE) were added to commercial diets individually or in combination and administered to OVX rats for 12 weeks. Bone properties, calcium and phosphorus absorption, and bone biochemical markers were measured to investigate the potential interactions between the actions of PR and the actions of WE on bone and mineral metabolism in OVX rats.
Results: Long-term treatment with PR did not significantly improve bone properties but greatly ameliorated the secondary hyperparathyroidism induced by ovariectomy in the animals. WE significantly enhanced the intestinal calcium absorption rate and decreased the enlarged trabecular bone surface at the site of metaphysic tibia in OVX rats. However, the positive effects of WE or PR alone on bone and mineral metabolism were diminished when OVX rats were cotreated with WE and PR.
Conclusions: The combination of these two herbs offsets their independent actions on bone and mineral metabolism in vivo. The results of the present study could provide insights to medical professionals to further their understanding of the potential negative impact of herb-herb interactions when a combination of herbal mixtures is used for the management of osteoporosis.