- Genetic variation explains up to 85% of bone mineral density
- Gender: Females generally have lower bone mass
- Menopause: Decreasing estrogen increases osteoporosis risk
- Testosterone: Lower testosterone results in a lower bone mass
- Ethnicity: Hispanics and African Americans have higher bone mass and reduced osteoporosis risk (compared to Caucasians and Asians)
- Physical activity: Weight-bearing exercises help strengthen bones
- Medications: Long-term use can reduce bone mass (e.g. corticosteroids)
- Nutrition: Reduced calcium and vitamin D uptake results in brittle bones
DNA Osteoporosis Test
- CYP2R1 encodes an enzyme responsible for converting vitamin D (from the diet or triggered by sun exposure) into a physiologically active form. Variants of this enzyme are associated with reduced enzyme activity and reduced levels of active vitamin D.
- GC encodes the vitamin D binding protein, which is required to transport active vitamin D around the body and into the cells. Variations of this protein reduce the efficiency of vitamin D transport and cellular uptake.
- WNT16 encodes a protein from the Wnt signalling pathway. Inactivating variations in this gene disrupt the Wnt cascade, resulting in reduced osteoblasts and bone formation. This leads to decreased bone density and an increased risk of osteoporosis.
- GDF5 encodes an important regulator protein for the maintenance, development and repair of bones, joints and cartilage. A variant of GDF5 reduces the expression of the regulator protein and increases the risk of osteoarthritis and fractures.
- COL1A1 encodes the major component of type I collagen, found in bone, skin and tendons. A variant of COL1A1 affects the formation of this collagen and is associated with decreased bone mineral density and osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
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