Role of vitamins beyond vitamin D3 in bone health and osteoporosis (Review)

Anatoly V. Skalny, Michael Aschner, Aristidis Tsatsakis, Joao B.T. Rocha, Abel Santamaria, Demetrios A. Spandidos, Airton C. Martins, L. U. Rongzhu, Tatiana V. Korobeinikova, Wen Chen, Chang Jung-Su, Jane C.J. Chao, L. I. Chong, Alexey A. Tinkov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The objective of the present review was to summa‑ rize the molecular mechanisms associated with the effects of the vitamins A, c, E and K, and group B vitamins on bone and their potential roles in the development of osteoporosis. Epidemiological findings have demonstrated an association between vitamin deficiency and a higher risk of developing osteoporosis; vitamins are positively related to bone health upon their intake at the physiological range. Excessive vitamin intake can also adversely affect bone formation, as clearly demonstrated for vitamin A. Vitamins E (tocopherols and toco‑ trienols), K2 (menaquinones 4 and 7) and c have also been shown to promote osteoblast development through bone morphoge‑ netic protein (BMP)/Smad and Wnt/β‑catenin signaling, as well as the TGFβ/Smad pathway (α‑tocopherol). Vitamin A metabolite (all‑trans retinoic acid) exerts both inhibitory and stimulatory effects on BMP‑ and Wnt/β‑catenin‑mediated osteogenesis at the nanomolar and micromolar range, respec‑ tively. Certain vitamins significantly reduce receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa‑B ligand (RANKL) production and RANKL/RANK signaling, while increasing the level of osteo‑ protegerin (OPG), thus reducing the RANKL/OPG ratio and exerting anti‑osteoclastogenic effects. Ascorbic acid can both promote and inhibit RANKL signaling, being essential for osteoclastogenesis. Vitamin K2 has also been shown to prevent vascular calcification by activating matrix Gla protein through its carboxylation. Therefore, the maintenance of a physiological intake of vitamins should be considered as a nutritional strategy for the prevention of osteoporosis.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024


  • menaquinone
  • osteogenesis
  • osteoporosis
  • tocopherol
  • vitamins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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