Dysregulation of skeletal remodeling is a component of renal osteodystrophy. Previously, we showed that activin receptor signaling is differentially affected in various tissues in chronic kidney disease (CKD). We tested whether a ligand trap for the activin receptor type 2A (RAP-011) is an effective treatment of the osteodystrophy of the CKD-mineral bone disorder. With a 70% reduction in the glomerular filtration rate, CKD was induced at 14 weeks of age in the ldlr−/− high fat-fed mouse model of atherosclerotic vascular calcification and diabetes. Twenty mice with CKD, hyperphosphatemia, hyperparathyroidism, and elevated activin A were treated with RAP-011, wherease 19 mice were given vehicle twice weekly from week 22 until the mice were killed at 28 weeks of age. The animals were then evaluated by skeletal histomorphometry, micro-computed tomography, mechanical strength testing, and ex vivo bone cell culture. Results in the CKD groups were compared with those of the 16 sham-operated ldlr−/− high fat-fed mice. Sham-operated mice had low-turnover osteodystrophy and skeletal frailty. CKD stimulated bone remodeling with significant increases in osteoclast and osteoblast numbers and bone resorption. Compared with mice with CKD and sham-operated mice, RAP-011 treatment eliminated the CKD-induced increase in these histomorphometric parameters and increased trabecular bone fraction. RAP-011 significantly increased cortical bone area and thickness. Activin A-enhanced osteoclastogenesis was mediated through p-Smad2 association with c-fos and activation of nuclear factor of activated T cells c1 (NFATc1). Thus, an ActRIIA ligand trap reversed CKD-stimulated bone remodeling, likely through inhibition of activin-A induced osteoclastogenesis.

Document Type


Publication Date


Notes/Citation Information

Published in Kidney International, v. 91, issue 1, p. 86-95.

Copyright © 2016, International Society of Nephrology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

This manuscript version is made available under the CC‐BY‐NC‐ND 4.0 license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.

The document available for download is the author's post-peer-review final draft of the article.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Funding Information

These studies were supported by NIH grants RO1 DK070790, and RO1 DK089137 (KAH) and RO1 DK080770 (HM), and P30 AR057235.

Related Content

Refer to Web version on PubMed Central for supplementary material.

NIHMS876802-supplement-Supplemental.pdf (161 kB)
Supplementary Material

Included in

Diseases Commons