• factor VIII deficiency;
  • osteopenia;
  • osteoporosis


Osteopenia and osteoporosis have increasingly become a recognized morbidity of factor VIII (FVIII) deficiency. Recently, we demonstrated that FVIII knockout (KO) mice had significantly decreased bone mass and bone strength despite the fact that they did not have haemarthroses. The aim of this study was to explore the mechanism of bone disease associated with FVIII deficiency. We compared biochemical markers of bone formation and osteoclastogenesis, inflammatory cytokines, as well as static and dynamic histomorphometry of genetically engineered FVIII KO male mice to those of wild-type (WT) controls. At 20 weeks of age, FVIII KO mice, as well as WT controls, were sacrificed. Serum and bones were obtained at the time of sacrifice to study biochemical markers of bone formation (osteocalcin) and osteoclastogenesis (receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-β and osteoprotegerin), levels of inflammatory cytokines (interleukin-1α and interferon-β) and to perform static and dynamic histomorphometry of tibia cancellous bone. There was no difference in the biochemical markers of bone formation or osteoclastogenesis. However, there were differences in the two bone-associated cytokines studied. In addition, histomorphometric examination revealed cancellous osteopenia in FVIII KO mice as evidenced by decreased bone area and trabecular number and increased trabecular separation. Bone formation parameters were normal in FVIII KO mice. In contrast, osteoclast-lined bone perimeter was increased. These data demonstrate that bone disease in FVIII KO mice is due to an increased rate of bone resorption.