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Measurement of Bone Tissue Turnover and Cell Dynamics in Metabolic Bone Disease by Means of In Vivo Tetracycline Bone Labeling.

Harold M. Frost, M.D.; Boy Frame, M.D., F.A.C.P.; James R. Ramcer, M.D.; A. R. Arnstein, M.D.; and Richmond W. Smith Jr., M.D., F.A.C.P.
Ann Intern Med. 1966;64(5):1172. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-64-5-1172_2
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A group of patients being studied for known or potential metabolic bone disease was given a double tetracycline label with 900 mg oral Dimethychloral tetracycline. An eleventh rib biopsy was then done under local anesthesia. With the aid of undecalcified sections and fluorescence microscopy, the bone turnover was measured and expressed as the per cent of the bone tissue being replaced by new tissue per year. In addition, indexes of the number of new osteoblasts generated by progenitor cells, and of the vigor of the representative individual osteoblast and osteoclast were measured.

We found that tissue turnover rates averaged below

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