Glucosamine, Chondroitin Studied for Bone Health, Diabetes

July 15, 2003

2 Min Read
Glucosamine, Chondroitin Studied for Bone Health, Diabetes

LYON, France--Researchers investigated the role glucosamine and chondroitin play in bone health and diabetes in the July 14 edition of the Archives of Internal Medicine ( In the study on bone health, researchers from the World Health Organization conducted a research review to investigate the structural and symptomatic efficacy of oral glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin sulfate in knee osteoarthritis (163, 13:1514-22, 2003). They chose randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials published or performed between January 1980 and March 2002 that assessed the efficacy of oral glucosamine or chondroitin. Results indicated glucosamine had a significantly high efficacy on all outcomes, including joint space narrowing and WOMAC (Western Ontario MacMaster University Osteoarthritis Index). Chondroitin was found to be effective in terms of the Lequesne Index, visual analog scale pain, mobility and responding status. Safety was excellent for both compounds.

However, this review uncovered there was relatively little study on glucosamine and joint space narrowing in addition to the structural effects of chondroitin.

In other research published in the same issue, researchers evaluated the effects of glucosamine and chondroitin supplementation on glycemic control in a selected population of patients with Type II diabetes (163, 13:1587-90, 2003). In the placebo-controlled, double blinded, randomized clinical trial, patients (most of whom were elderly and being treated with drugs for glycemic control) received 1,500 mg/d of glucosamine hydrochloride and 1,200 mg/d of chondroitin sulfate (as CosaminDS from Nutramax Laboratories Inc. in Edgewood, Md.) for 90 days.

Mean hemoglobin concentrations were not significantly different between groups prior to glucosamine therapy, and after therapy, no significant differences were found. Researchers concluded oral glucosamine and chondroitin supplementation does not result in clinically significant alterations in glucose metabolism in patients with Type II diabetes.

"The findings from the study were neither surprising nor unexpected because of the successful history of CosaminDS," said Jane Williams, senior director of marketing at Nutramax, which provided product for the study.

Currently, other studies are underway on CosaminDS, such as one by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which is using the product in its multimillion dollar study on glucosamine, chondroitin and bone health.

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