Selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM) for the treatment of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women: focus on lasofoxifene
Luigi Gennari, Daniela Merlotti, Ranuccio Nuti
Department of Internal Medicine, Endocrine-Metabolic Sciences and Biochemistry, University of Siena, Siena, Italy
Abstract: Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) represent a class with a growing number of compounds that act as either estrogen receptor agonists or antagonists in a tissuespecific manner. This article reviews lasofoxifene, a new-generation SERM that has completed phase III development for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. Consistent with preclinical observations, this new SERM demonstrated improved skeletal efficacy over raloxifene and at an oral dose of 0.5 mg/day was effective in the prevention of both vertebral and nonvertebral fractures in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. At the same dosage, lasofoxifene treatment also reduced estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer risk and the occurrence of vaginal atrophy, but, like the other SERMs, was associated with hot flushes and an increased risk of venous thromboembolic events. With its increased efficacy on the prevention of nonvertebral fractures than current available SERMs and its positive effects on the vagina, this new compound may represent an alternative and cost-effective therapy for osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
Keywords: SERM, lasofoxifene, postmenopausal osteoporosis, fractures, bone density, menopause
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