Senescent cells cause harm throughout the body, accumulating in number with advancing age. They are found in all tissues, and this includes the cells of the immune system. The growing presence of senescent cells, and the harmful signals they generate, is one of the root causes of degenerative aging. There is a good amount of evidence for senescent cells to contribute to osteoporosis, of which the most compelling is that osteoporosis can be partially reversed in mice through targeted clearance of these unwanted cells. The study here is a different view into the link between cellular senescence and bone loss, with a focus on the autoimmune condition rheumatoid arthritis. While not an age-related disease, rheumatoid arthritis is associated with a greater risk of osteoporosis and greater number of senescent T cells. As such it is a useful point of comparison with normal aging.
Bone loss is one of the most common comorbidities of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Depending on the population studied, 10-56% of RA patients suffer from osteoporosis. In healthy individuals, bone homeostasis is maintained by a balance between bone formation and bone resorption. A link
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