Objectives To investigate the relationship between serum sclerostin level, body composition, and bone mineral density (BMD) in central south Chinese postmenopausal women.
Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted on 260 healthy central southern Chinese postmenopausal women with vs without osteoporosis, aged 50–76 years old. Dual X-ray absorptiometry was used to measure the bone mineral content and BMD of the whole body, lumbar spine and left femur, and total body soft tissue composition. Serum sclerostin levels were measured by a quantitative sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
Results Compared with women without osteoporosis, osteoporotic women had a significantly lower level of serum sclerostin (P = 0·001). Serum sclerostin levels were positively correlated with body weight, Ponderal index and fat mass. There was a positive correlation with the BMD of both the whole body and at various sites (P < 0·05), even after controlling for age, age at menopause, height and body weight. Multiple linear stepwise regression analysis showed that serum sclerostin level was the most significant determinant of both whole-body and lumbar spine BMD, compared with age, age at menopause, fat mass and lean mass. Age had similar impact as serum sclerostin on hip BMD.
Conclusions This study showed that in central south Chinese postmenopausal women, serum sclerostin is lower in women with osteoporosis than without. Serum sclerostin is positively correlated with fat mass and BMD for the whole body, lumbar spine and hip.