By exploiting cross-species sequence comparisons with in vitro and in vivo enhancer assays we were able to identify enhancer elements that drives human SOST expression in the adult mouse skeleton, and discovered a novel function for sclerostin during limb development. The enhancer elements and reagents described in the present invention facilitate the methods for development of products and methods to increase the mineral content of bone, which can consequently be utilized to treat a wide variety of bone related conditions, including, osteopenia, osteoporosis, fractures and other disorders in which low bone mineral density are the main cause of the disease as well as sclerosteosis, Van Buchem disease and other related disorders of the skeleton. Furthermore, the present invention provides enhancer elements and reagents useful for bone pattering and growth, limb development, and the formation of individual bones
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENTAL SUPPORT
 This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-AC02-05CH11231 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy and Grant No. P60HL20985 awarded by the National Institutes of Health. The government has certain rights in this invention.