Mapping parathyroid hormones to help osteoporosis patients

Cryo-EM structure of 1-hormone parathyroid signaling complex of the person. [Photo/Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica]

Scientists first have clearly seen the dynamic structure of human parathyroid hormones receptor, which is closely related to the secretion of diseases including osteoporosis, hypoparathyroidism, and cachexia.

The exposure gives valuable insights into novel therapeutics discovering against such diseases, the group of researchers said at a media briefing on Friday.

Osteoporosis patients, the National Health Commission said in October almost 20 percent of China over 50 years of age, medication must be taken that stimulates the parathyroid human hormone receptor.

Because these medicines are polypeptides, they can only be injected with oral ones, which can stimulate reaction to oral enzymes and be ineffective, researchers said.

"Due to the successful look at the dynamic structure, we can clearly see what precise position the hormone goes into the receptor as well as the corresponding reactions occurring to downstream signaling proteins and the environment," Zhao said. Lihua, one of the largest researchers and associate professor from Shanghai Materia Medica Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

"It will allow scientists to filter compounds of small molecules suited to this precise location. If successful, researchers can continue to develop oral drugs," she said.

A paper on the study by the Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica from CAS was published in collaboration with researchers from the School of Basic Medical Sciences at Zhejiang University and Pittsburgh Medical School on a US-based magazine website Science Friday.


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