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Keywords:

  • adenosine triphosphate release;
  • extracellular signal-regulated kinases phosphorylation;
  • gravity loading;
  • P2Y receptor;
  • periodontal ligament

Abstract

Aim

The periodontal ligament (PDL) receives mechanical stress (MS) from dental occlusion or orthodontic tooth movement. Mechanical stress is thought to be a trigger for remodeling of the PDL and alveolar bone, although its signaling mechanism is still unclear. So we investigated the effect of MS on adenosine triphosphate (ATP) release and extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) phosphorylation in PDL cells.

Methods

Mechanical stress was applied to human PDL cells as centrifugation-mediated gravity loading. Apyrase, Ca2+-free medium and purinergic receptor agonists and antagonists were utilized to analyze the contribution of purinergic receptors to ERK phosphorylation.

Results

Gravity loading and ATP increased ERK phosphorylation by 5 and 2.5 times, respectively. Gravity loading induced ATP release from PDL cells by tenfold. Apyrase and suramin diminished ERK phosphorylation induced by both gravity loading and ATP. Under Ca2+-free conditions the phosphorylation by gravity loading was partially decreased, whereas ATP-induced phosphorylation was unaffected. Receptors P2Y4 and P2Y6 were prominently expressed in the PDL cells.

Conclusion

Gravity loading induced ATP release and ERK phosphorylation in PDL fibroblasts, and ATP signaling via P2Y receptors was partially involved in this phosphorylation, which in turn would enhance gene expression for the remodeling of PDL tissue during orthodontic tooth movement.