The bisphosphonate bone drug alendronate was shown to relieve symptoms of emphysema associated with COPD in a study with mice.

Researchers led by Masahiko Kurabayashi, of the Gunma University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan, used a mouse model of COPD and cell culture to demonstrate that alendronate can be used to target abnormal alveolar macrophages and thereby alleviate the symptoms of the disease.

“The non-invasiveness and feasibility of inhalational alendronate delivery may have important implications for the future treatment of COPD, in which alveolar macrophages play a key pathogenic role,” say the researchers, who published their findings in Nature Communications.

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