Vitam Horm. 2018 ;108:367-384. Epub 2018 Feb 19. PMID: 30029735
Dehydroepiandrosterone and Experimental Osteoarthritis.
Despite an increased understanding of the pathogenesis of osteoarthritis (OA) and the availability of a number of drugs designed to ameliorate its symptoms, a successful disease-modifying therapy remains elusive. Recent lines of evidence suggest that dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), a 19-carbon steroid hormone classified as an adrenal androgen, exerts a chondroprotective effect in OA patients, and it has been proven to be an effective DMOAD candidate that slows OA progression. However, the exact mechanisms underlying its anti-OA effect is largely unknown. This review summarizes emerging observations from studies of cell biology, preclinical animal studies, and preliminary clinical trials and describes the findings of investigations on this topic to develop an initial blueprint of the mechanisms by which DHEA slows OA progression. Presently, studies on DMOADs are increasing in importance but have met limited success. Encouragingly, the current data on DHEA are promising and may prove that DHEA-based treatment is efficacious for preventing and slowing human OA progression.