Differential Effects of Oral Doxercalciferol (Hectorol®) or Paricalcitol (Zemplar®) in the Cyp27b1-Null Mouse Model of Uremia


René St-Arnaud, Alice Arabian, Omar Akhouayri, Joyce C. Knutson, Stephen A. Strugnell


Kidney disease patients experience declining calcitriol levels and develop secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT). Animal models of uremia based on 5/6 nephrectomy (NTX) do not consistently reproduce this calcitriol deficiency. We developed an animal model, the NTX Cyp27b1-null mouse, which completely lacks endogenous calcitriol, and examined the suitability of this model for evaluation of treatment with vitamin D analogs in uremia. Methods: NTX was performed at 2 months of age. One week post-NTX, animals were treated for 4 weeks with vehicle; doxercalciferol at 30, 100 or 300 pg/g body weight (b.w.); or paricalcitol at 100, 300 or 1,000 pg/g b.w. by gavage 3 times per week. Serum blood urea nitrogen and creatinine were elevated. Vehicle-treated NTX null mice had hypocalcemia and SHPT. Doxercalciferol at 100 or 300 pg/g b.w. normalized serum calcium and parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels. Paricalcitol at 300 or 1,000 pg/g normalized serum calcium, but PTH levels remained elevated. Osteomalacia was corrected by 100 pg/g b.w. of doxercalciferol or 1,000 pg/g b.w. of paricalcitol. The highest dose of doxercalciferol, but not of paricalcitol, significantly reduced osteitis fibrosa. Our results reveal the differential efficacy of doxercalciferol and paricalcitol in this novel animal model incorporating both calcitriol deficiency and renal insufficiency.

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