CNS Update: Osteogenic Effect of Pregabalin in hMSCs, Osteoblasts, and Osteosarcoma Cells


eMediNexus    18 January 2023

Nearly 70 million patients suffer from epilepsy globally. Antiepileptic drugs, when used for a longer duration can alter the bone tissue and its metabolism, thus raising the risk of fractures. Clinical and pre-clinical studies have rendered inconsistent data regarding the use of pregabalin as a new antiepileptic drug. A recent study thus investigated its cytotoxicity in primary human osteoblasts (hOB). 


HOB and human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) were sequestered from patients and the human osteosarcoma cells MG63 were contained as an established cell line. Further, the cells were incubated with pregabalin at concentrations ranging from 0 to 40 μg/mL. Automatic cell counting measured Time-dependent cell proliferation, XTT assay measured metabolism and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity measured osseous differentiation. Calcium deposits were evaluated histologically employing ALP, Alizarin Red, and von Kossa staining. 


  • Treatment with pregabalin showed a concentration-dependent boost in the proliferation of hOB and hMSC.
  • Cell metabolism increased substantially in all cells.
  • Administration of pregabalin (even at the therapeutic plasma concentration of 10 μg/mL) enhanced the osteogenic differentiation, verified by an increase in calcium deposit. 

Thus, contrasting to other antiepileptic drugs, pregabalin demonstrated no osteocatabolic effects.


Source: Cells. Life. 2022; 12(4):496. https://doi.org/10.3390/life12040496

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