Narrator: This is Science Today. Osteoporosis - a disease characterized by low bone mass and deterioration of bone tissue - is often associated with women. But Farhad Parhami, a researcher at UCLA, says the disease also affects men - especially as they age.
Parhami: It just happens that men tend to get osteoporosis later in life and now it seems that at least one of the reasons that this happens is that they start out with a higher peak bone mass. So they have more bone to start with than women do. Therefore, by the time that bone is lost to the degree that it will be clinically significant and will cause fractures happens later in life than in women.
Narrator: Parhami and his colleagues found a possible risk factor for osteoporosis is having high cholesterol.
Parhami: We have just started to look at this phenomenon and we haven't really proven that cholesterol plays a role in osteoporosis. It's an exciting new area and we're going to go ahead and pursue it and see if there is definite cause and effect relationship there.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.