Glucocorticoids are a powerful tool used to treat a range of human illnesses, including autoimmune diseases and cancer, and to prevent rejection following organ transplantation. While lifesaving for many, they come with a steep price, often leading to obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, and osteoporosis. In this issue of the JCI, Brennan-Speranza and colleagues provide evidence that the osteoblast-derived peptide osteocalcin is one of the drivers of the metabolic derangements associated with glucocorticoid therapy. This novel mechanism could open up new avenues for the treatment of these disorders.
Heather A. Ferris, C. Ronald Kahn