It has been shown that, in live subjects, the ability of calcitonin (CT) to decrease serum calcium (Ca) levels can be lost in response to its continued or repeated administration. The present study investigated the relationship between such changes of in vivo serum Ca levels and the response of osteoclasts to CT administration, including the downregulation of their CT receptors (CTRs). Rats were either given a single injection of CT or repeated injections at either 6- or 24-h intervals, after which their serum Ca levels were evaluated. Their parietal bones were dissected, and the amount of 125I-labeled elcatonin (125I-eCT) binding to their osteoclasts measured using autoradiography. Ultrastructural changes in the osteoclasts were also examined. Twenty-four hours after a single CT administration, serum Ca levels had dropped, and there was an absence of ruffled borders on the osteoclasts. Less 125I-eCT binding to the osteoclast was found than in the control group. Forty-eight and 72 h after CT administration, serum Ca levels had almost returned to control levels, and the osteoclasts showed ruffled borders once again. The amount of 125I-eCT binding to the osteoclast also recovered to control levels. When these osteoclasts were then incubated in CT, their ruffled borders once again disappeared. In the 6-h interval multiple CT administration schedule subjects, upon inspection 72 h after their first administration (6 h following the final one), serum Ca levels were found to have almost returned to control levels with the presence of osteoclast ruffled borders. The amount of 125I-eCT binding to these osteoclasts was remarkably limited, and no disappearance of the ruffled borders occurred in response to additional CT incubation. In the 24-h interval multiple administration schedule subjects, upon inspection 72 h after their first CT administration (24 h following the final one), there was less 125I-eCT binding than in the single-dose subjects tested 24 h after their injection, and the ability of CT to lower their serum Ca levels was reduced. The ability of CT to lower serum Ca levels was therefore related to the response of osteoclasts to the CT (the disappearance of the ruffled borders), and this response was related to the amount of CTRs available for binding with CT on the osteoclast surface. Furthermore, the reduced effectiveness of CT in response to repeated CT administration was found to be related to the downregulation of the CTRs on the osteoclast surface.
- Osteoclast morphology
- Serum calcium levels
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism