Irisin and Bone in Sickness and in Health: A Narrative Review of the Literature

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleContributedpeer-review



Irisin is a hormone-like myokine produced by the skeletal muscle in response to exercise. Upon its release into the circulation, it is involved in the browning process and thermogenesis, but recent evidence indicates that this myokine could also regulate the functions of osteoblasts, osteoclasts, and osteocytes. Most human studies have reported that serum irisin levels decrease with age and in conditions involving bone diseases, including both primary and secondary osteoporosis. However, it should be emphasized that recent findings have called into question the importance of circulating irisin, as well as the validity and reproducibility of current methods of irisin measurement. In this review, we summarize data pertaining to the role of irisin in the bone homeostasis of healthy children and adults, as well as in the context of primary and secondary osteoporosis. Additional research is required to address methodological issues, and functional studies are required to clarify whether muscle and bone damage per se affect circulating levels of irisin or whether the modulation of this myokine is caused by the inherent mechanisms of underlying diseases, such as genetic or inflammatory causes. These investigations would shed further light on the effects of irisin on bone homeostasis and bone disease.


Original languageEnglish
Article number6863
JournalJournal of clinical medicine
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2022

External IDs

PubMedCentral PMC9699623
Scopus 85142437451
WOS 000887410800001
Mendeley 7961f072-7589-3200-896e-67e8f9f39515
ORCID /0000-0002-8691-8423/work/142236060


Research priority areas of TU Dresden

DFG Classification of Subject Areas according to Review Boards

Subject groups, research areas, subject areas according to Destatis

Sustainable Development Goals

ASJC Scopus subject areas


  • Bone mineral density, Fndc5, Fractures, Irisin, Osteoporosis, Sarcopenia, FNDC5, bone mineral density, irisin, osteoporosis, fractures, sarcopenia