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IrisinMyokineNew Bone formationOsteoporosiOsteoporosisSarcopenia


The patent focuses on the possible use of the protein Irisin as a drug for the treatment and prevention of osteoporosis. This is a disease of social relevance, especially due to the great social and health impact of the fractures resulting from the disease. About the 15-18% of all fractures are caused by osteoporosis. Over 200 million people, including 22 million only in Europe, suffer from bone fragility. Osteoporosis is almost always associated with a concomitant decline of skeletal muscle mass (Sarcopenia) which leads to a high risk of falls, further increasing the risk of fracture. Our results showed that the administration of low-dose Irisin, in experimental osteoporotic murine models, is able both to prevent and treat Osteoporosis and Sarcopenia.

Technical features

The benefits of exercise on the skeleton are widely recognized, although the identikit of the mediator of this effect has remained unknown for a long time. Today this molecule, produced by muscle following physical activity, is finally known. The function of the Irisin on the bones was identified by our research published in 2015. Our results show that the in vivo administration of Irisin, in animal models of Osteoporosis and Sarcopenia, is able to prevent and treat both the pathologies. Irisin acts on all cell populations present in the bone but is particularly active on the cells that form new bone. This results in an increase in Bone Mineral Density (BMD) and an increase in fracture resistance. This effect is accompanied by the action that Irisin exerts on skeletal muscle cells, in which it prevents the reduction of muscle mass and the consequent development of muscular atrophy and/or Sarcopenia.

Possible Applications

  • Development of an exercise-mimetic drug for the treatment and prevention of Osteoporosis and Sarcopenia;
  • Patients suffering from Osteoporosis (200 million people in the world);
  • Astronauts during space missions due to the absence of gravity.


  • Anabolic physiological molecule for the skeleton and muscle;
  • High tolerability at the doses used;
  • Could not present the side effects typical of currently available drugs;
  • Treat osteoporosis and sarcopenia in one shot;
  • Also administered as a preventive measure.