Methods for studying tooth root cementum by light microscopy.
ABSTRACT: The tooth root cementum is a thin, mineralized tissue covering the root dentin that is present primarily as acellular cementum on the cervical root and cellular cementum covering the apical root. While cementum shares many properties in common with bone and dentin, it is a unique mineralized tissue and acellular cementum is critical for attachment of the tooth to the surrounding periodontal ligament (PDL). Resources for methodologies for hard tissues often overlook cementum and approaches that may be of value for studying this tissue. To address this issue, this report offers detailed methodology, as well as comparisons of several histological and immunohistochemical stains available for imaging the cementum-PDL complex by light microscopy. Notably, the infrequently used Alcian blue stain with nuclear fast red counterstain provided utility in imaging cementum in mouse, porcine and human teeth. While no truly unique extracellular matrix markers have been identified to differentiate cementum from the other hard tissues, immunohistochemistry for detection of bone sialoprotein (BSP), osteopontin (OPN), and dentin matrix protein 1 (DMP1) is a reliable approach for studying both acellular and cellular cementum and providing insight into developmental biology of these tissues. Histological and immunohistochemical approaches provide insight on developmental biology of cementum.
Project description:Bone sialoprotein (BSP) is an extracellular matrix protein found in mineralized tissues of the skeleton and dentition. BSP is multifunctional, affecting cell attachment and signaling through an RGD integrin-binding region, and acting as a positive regulator for mineral precipitation by nucleating hydroxyapatite crystals. BSP is present in cementum, the hard tissue covering the tooth root that anchors periodontal ligament (PDL) attachment. To test our hypothesis that BSP plays an important role in cementogenesis, we analyzed tooth development in a Bsp null ((-/-)) mouse model. Developmental analysis by histology, histochemistry, and SEM revealed a significant reduction in acellular cementum formation on Bsp (-/-) mouse molar and incisor roots, and the cementum deposited appeared hypomineralized. Structural defects in cementum-PDL interfaces in Bsp (-/-) mice caused PDL detachment, likely contributing to the high incidence of incisor malocclusion. Loss of BSP caused progressively disorganized PDL and significantly increased epithelial down-growth with aging. Bsp (-/-) mice displayed extensive root and alveolar bone resorption, mediated by increased RANKL and the presence of osteoclasts. Results collected here suggest that BSP plays a non-redundant role in acellular cementum formation, likely involved in initiating mineralization on the root surface. Through its importance to cementum integrity, BSP is essential for periodontal function.
Project description:The periodontal complex is essential for tooth attachment and function and includes the mineralized tissues, cementum and alveolar bone, separated by the unmineralized periodontal ligament (PDL). To gain insights into factors regulating cementum-PDL and bone-PDL borders and protecting against ectopic calcification within the PDL, we employed a proteomic approach to analyze PDL tissue from progressive ankylosis knock-out (Ank-/-) mice, featuring reduced PPi, rapid cementogenesis, and excessive acellular cementum. Using this approach, we identified the matrix protein osteopontin (Spp1/OPN) as an elevated factor of interest in Ank-/- mouse molar PDL. We studied the role of OPN in dental and periodontal development and function. During tooth development in wild-type (WT) mice, Spp1 mRNA was transiently expressed by cementoblasts and strongly by alveolar bone osteoblasts. Developmental analysis from 14 to 240days postnatal (dpn) indicated normal histological structures in Spp1-/- comparable to WT control mice. Microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) analysis at 30 and 90dpn revealed significantly increased volumes and tissue mineral densities of Spp1-/- mouse dentin and alveolar bone, while pulp and PDL volumes were decreased and tissue densities were increased. However, acellular cementum growth was unaltered in Spp1-/- mice. Quantitative PCR of periodontal-derived mRNA failed to identify potential local compensators influencing cementum in Spp1-/- vs. WT mice at 26dpn. We genetically deleted Spp1 on the Ank-/- mouse background to determine whether increased Spp1/OPN was regulating periodontal tissues when the PDL space is challenged by hypercementosis in Ank-/- mice. Ank-/-; Spp1-/- double deficient mice did not exhibit greater hypercementosis than that in Ank-/- mice. Based on these data, we conclude that OPN has a non-redundant role regulating formation and mineralization of dentin and bone, influences tissue properties of PDL and pulp, but does not control acellular cementum apposition. These findings may inform therapies targeted at controlling soft tissue calcification.
Project description:Cementum covering the tooth root provides attachment for the tooth proper to the surrounding alveolar bone via non-mineralized periodontal ligament (PDL). Cementum protein 1 (CEMP1) has been shown to induce a cementoblastic phenotype in cementoblast precursors cells of PDL. Oxygen availability is a critical signal for correct development of many tissues; however, its role in tooth root and periodontium development remains poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that reduced oxygen tension increased CEMP1 expression, mineral deposition, and alkaline phosphatase activity in human dental stem cells such as PDL stem cells and periapical follicular stem cells. Since an oxemic state is transduced by the transcription factor, hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1), we performed experiments to determine whether this protein was responsible for the observed changes. We noted that when HIF-1 was activated by gene introduction or chemically, CEMP1 expression and mineralization increased. In contrast, when HIF-1? was silenced, CEMP1 expression and mineralization did not increase in vitro. Furthermore, we showed for the first time that mouse tooth root and periodontium development occurs partly under hypoxic conditions, particularly at the apical part and latently at the PDL space in vivo. Desferrioxamine, an HIF-1 stimulator, enhances CEMP1 expression in the mouse PDL space, suggesting that hypoxia affects cementogenesis of PDL cells lining the surface of the developing tooth root in an HIF-1-dependent manner. These results suggest that HIF-1 activators may have the ability to stimulate regeneration of the tooth root and cementum formation.
Project description:The periodontium, consisting of gingiva, periodontal ligament (PDL), cementum, and alveolar bone, is necessary for the maintenance of tooth function. Specifically, the regenerative abilities of cementum with inserted PDL are important for the prevention of tooth loss. Periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs), which are located in the connective tissue PDL between the cementum and alveolar bone, are an attractive candidate for hard tissue formation. We investigated the effects of recombinant human plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (rhPAI-1) on cementogenic differentiation of human PDLSCs (hPDLSCs) in vitro and in vivo. Untreated and rhPAI-1-treated hPDLSCs mixed with hydroxyapatite/tricalcium phosphate (HA/TCP) and dentin matrix were transplanted subcutaneously into the dorsal surface of immunocompromised mice to assess their capacity for hard tissue formation at 8 and 10 weeks posttransplantation. rhPAI-1 accelerated mineral nodule formation and increased the mRNA expression of cementoblast-associated markers in hPDLSCs. We also observed that rhPAI-1 upregulated the levels of osterix (OSX) and cementum protein 1 (CEMP1) through Smad2/3 and p38 pathways, whereas specific inhibitors of Smad3 and p38 inhibited the enhancement of mineralization of hPDLSCs by rhPAI-1. Furthermore, transplantation of hPDLSCs with rhPAI-1 showed a great ability to promote cementogenic differentiation. Notably, rhPAI-1 induced hPDLSCs to regenerate cementum-like tissue with PDL fibers inserted into newly formed cementum-like tissue. These results suggest that rhPAI-1 may play a key role in cementogenic differentiation of hPDLSCs. rhPAI-1 with hPDLSCs may be a good candidate for future clinical applications in periodontal tissue regeneration and possibly in tooth root bioengineering.
Project description:The tooth root and periodontal apparatus, including the acellular and cellular cementum, periodontal ligament (PDL), and alveolar bone, are critical for tooth function. Cementum and bone mineralization is regulated by factors including enzymes and extracellular matrix proteins that promote or inhibit hydroxyapatite crystal growth. Orphan Phosphatase 1 (Phospho1, PHOSPHO1) is a phosphatase expressed by chondrocytes, osteoblasts, and odontoblasts that functions in skeletal and dentin mineralization by initiating deposition of hydroxyapatite inside membrane-limited matrix vesicles. The role of PHOSPHO1 in periodontal formation remains unknown and we aimed to determine its functional importance in these tissues. We hypothesized that the enzyme would regulate proper mineralization of the periodontal apparatus. Spatiotemporal expression of PHOSPHO1 was mapped during periodontal development, and Phospho1(-/-) mice were analyzed using histology, immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, radiography, and micro-computed tomography. The Phospho1 gene and PHOSPHO1 protein were expressed by active alveolar bone osteoblasts and cementoblasts during cellular cementum formation. In Phospho1(-/-) mice, acellular cementum formation and mineralization were unaffected, whereas cellular cementum deposition increased although it displayed delayed mineralization and cementoid. Phospho1(-/-) mice featured disturbances in alveolar bone mineralization, shown by accumulation of unmineralized osteoid matrix and interglobular patterns of protein deposition. Parallel to other skeletal sites, deposition of mineral-regulating protein osteopontin (OPN) was increased in alveolar bone in Phospho1(-/-) mice. In contrast to the skeleton, genetic ablation of Spp1, the gene encoding OPN, did not ameliorate dentoalveolar defects in Phospho1(-/-) mice. Despite alveolar bone mineralization defects, periodontal attachment and function appeared undisturbed in Phospho1(-/-) mice, with normal PDL architecture and no evidence of bone loss over time. This study highlights the role of PHOSPHO1 in mineralization of alveolar bone and cellular cementum, further revealing that acellular cementum formation is not substantially regulated by PHOSPHO1 and likely does not rely on matrix vesicle-mediated initiation of mineralization.
Project description:Tooth-supporting periodontium forms a complex with multiple tissues, including cementum, periodontal ligament (PDL), and alveolar bone. In this study, we developed multiphase region-specific microscaffolds with spatiotemporal delivery of bioactive cues for integrated periodontium regeneration. Polycarprolactione-hydroxylapatite (90:10 wt%) scaffolds were fabricated using three-dimensional printing seamlessly in three phases: 100-?m microchannels in Phase A designed for cementum/dentin interface, 600-?m microchannels in Phase B designed for the PDL, and 300-?m microchannels in Phase C designed for alveolar bone. Recombinant human amelogenin, connective tissue growth factor, and bone morphogenetic protein-2 were spatially delivered and time-released in Phases A, B, and C, respectively. Upon 4-week in vitro incubation separately with dental pulp stem/progenitor cells (DPSCs), PDL stem/progenitor cells (PDLSCs), or alveolar bone stem/progenitor cells (ABSCs), distinctive tissue phenotypes were formed with collagen I-rich fibers especially by PDLSCs and mineralized tissues by DPSCs, PDLSCs, and ABSCs. DPSC-seeded multiphase scaffolds upon in vivo implantation yielded aligned PDL-like collagen fibers that inserted into bone sialoprotein-positive bone-like tissue and putative cementum matrix protein 1-positive/dentin sialophosphoprotein-positive dentin/cementum tissues. These findings illustrate a strategy for the regeneration of multiphase periodontal tissues by spatiotemporal delivery of multiple proteins. A single stem/progenitor cell population appears to differentiate into putative dentin/cementum, PDL, and alveolar bone complex by scaffold's biophysical properties and spatially released bioactive cues.
Project description:Bone sialoprotein (BSP) is an acidic phosphoprotein with collagen-binding, cell attachment, and hydroxyapatite-nucleating properties. BSP expression in mineralized tissues is upregulated at onset of mineralization. Bsp-null (Bsp(-/-)) mice exhibit reductions in bone mineral density, bone turnover, osteoclast activation, and impaired bone healing. Furthermore, Bsp(-/-) mice have marked periodontal tissue breakdown, with a lack of acellular cementum leading to periodontal ligament detachment, extensive alveolar bone and tooth root resorption, and incisor malocclusion. We hypothesized that altered mechanical stress from mastication contributes to periodontal destruction observed in Bsp(-/-) mice. This hypothesis was tested by comparing Bsp(-/-) and wild-type mice fed with standard hard pellet diet or soft powder diet. Dentoalveolar tissues were analyzed using histology and micro-computed tomography. By 8 wk of age, Bsp(-/-) mice exhibited molar and incisor malocclusion regardless of diet. Bsp(-/-) mice with hard pellet diet exhibited high incidence (30%) of severe incisor malocclusion, 10% lower body weight, 3% reduced femur length, and 30% elevated serum alkaline phosphatase activity compared to wild type. Soft powder diet reduced severe incisor malocclusion incidence to 3% in Bsp(-/-) mice, supporting the hypothesis that occlusal loading contributed to the malocclusion phenotype. Furthermore, Bsp(-/-) mice in the soft powder diet group featured normal body weight, long bone length, and serum alkaline phosphatase activity, suggesting that tooth dysfunction and malnutrition contribute to growth and skeletal defects reported in Bsp(-/-) mice. Bsp(-/-) incisors also erupt at a slower rate, which likely leads to the observed thickened dentin and enhanced mineralization of dentin and enamel toward the apical end. We propose that the decrease in eruption rate is due to a lack of acellular cementum and associated defective periodontal attachment. These data demonstrate the importance of BSP in maintaining proper periodontal function and alveolar bone remodeling and point to dental dysfunction as causative factor of skeletal defects observed in Bsp(-/-) mice.
Project description:ALPL encodes tissue-nonspecific alkaline phosphatase (TNAP), an enzyme expressed in bone, teeth, liver, and kidney. ALPL loss-of-function mutations cause hypophosphatasia (HPP), an inborn error-of-metabolism that produces skeletal and dental mineralization defects. Case reports describe widely varying dental phenotypes, making it unclear how HPP comparatively affects the three unique dental mineralized tissues: enamel, dentin, and cementum. We hypothesized that HPP affected all dental mineralized tissues and aimed to establish quantitative measurements of dental tissues in a subject with HPP. The female proband was diagnosed with HPP during childhood based on reduced alkaline phosphatase activity (ALP), mild rachitic skeletal effects, and premature primary tooth loss. The diagnosis was subsequently confirmed genetically by the presence of compound heterozygous ALPL mutations (exon 5: c.346G>A, p.A116T; exon 10: c.1077C>G, p.I359M). Dental defects in 8 prematurely exfoliated primary teeth were analyzed by high resolution micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) and histology. Similarities to the Alpl<sup>-/-</sup> mouse model of HPP were identified by additional analyses of murine dentoalveolar tissues. Primary teeth from the proband exhibited substantial remaining root structure compared to healthy control teeth. Enamel and dentin densities were not adversely affected in HPP vs. control teeth. However, analysis of discrete dentin regions revealed an approximate 10% reduction in the density of outer mantle dentin of HPP vs. control teeth. All 4 incisors and the molar lacked acellular cementum by micro-CT and histology, but surprisingly, 2 of 3 prematurely exfoliated canines exhibited apparently normal acellular cementum. Based on dentin findings in the proband's teeth, we examined dentoalveolar tissues in a mouse model of HPP, revealing that the delayed initiation of mineralization in the incisor mantle dentin was associated with a broader lack of circumpulpal dentin mineralization. This study describes a quantitative approach to measure effects of HPP on dental tissues. This approach has uncovered a previously unrecognized novel mantle dentin defect in HPP, as well as a surprising and variable cementum phenotype within the teeth from the same HPP subject.
Project description:Acellular extrinsic fiber cementum is a mineralized tissue that covers the cervical half of the tooth root surface. It contains mainly extrinsic or Sharpey's fibers that run perpendicular to the root surface to anchor the tooth via the periodontal ligament. Acellular cementum is continuously and slowly produced throughout life and exhibits an alternating bright and dark pattern under light microscopy. However, although a better understanding of the structural background of acellular cementum is relevant to many fields, such as cementochronology, periodontology and tissue engineering, acellular cementum remains rarely studied and poorly understood. In this work, we studied the acellular cementum at the incremental line scale of five human mandibular canines using polarized Raman spectroscopy. We provided Raman imaging analysis and polarized acquisitions as a function of the angular orientation of the sample. The results showed that mineral crystals were always parallel to collagen fibrils, and at a larger scale, we proposed an organizational model in which we found radial collagen fibers, "orthogonal" to the cementum surface, and "non-orthogonal" fibers, which consist of branching and bending radial fibers. Concerning the alternating pattern, we observed that the dark lines corresponded to smaller, more mineralized and probably more organized bands, which is consistent with the zoological assumption that incremental lines are produced during a winter rest period of acellular cementum growth.
Project description:Previous studies revealed that cementum formation is tightly regulated by inorganic pyrophosphate (PPi), a mineralization inhibitor. Local PPi concentrations are determined by regulators, including ectonucleotide pyrophosphatase/phosphodiesterase 1 (ENPP1), which increases PPi concentrations by adenosine triphosphate hydrolysis. Orthodontic forces stimulate alveolar bone remodelling, leading to orthodontic tooth movement (OTM). To better understand how disturbed mineral metabolism and the resulting altered periodontal structures affect OTM, we employed Enpp1 mutant mice that feature reduced PPi and increased cervical cementum in a model of OTM induced by a stretched closed-coil spring ligated between the maxillary left first molar and maxillary incisors. We analyzed tooth movement, osteoclast/odontoclast response, and tooth root resorption by micro-computed tomography, histology, histomorphometry, and immunohistochemistry. Preoperatively, we noted an altered periodontium in Enpp1 mutant mice, with significantly increased periodontal ligament (PDL) volume and thickness, as well as increased PDL-bone/tooth root surface area, compared to wild-type (WT) controls. After 11 d of orthodontic treatment, Enpp1 mutant mice displayed 38% reduced tooth movement versus WT mice. Molar roots in Enpp1 mutant mice exhibited less change in PDL width in compression and tension zones compared to WT mice. Root resorption was noted in both groups with no difference in average depths, but resorption lacunae in Enpp1 mutant mice were almost entirely limited to cementum, with 150% increased cementum resorption and 92% decreased dentin resorption. Osteoclast/odontoclast cells were reduced by 64% in Enpp1 mutant mice, with a predominance of tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP)-positive cells on root surfaces, compared to WT mice. Increased numbers of TRAP-positive cells on root surfaces were associated with robust immunolocalization of osteopontin (OPN) and receptor-activator of NF-?B ligand (RANKL). Collectively, reduced response to orthodontic forces, decreased tooth movement, and altered osteoclast/odontoclast distribution suggests Enpp1 loss of function has direct effects on clastic function/recruitment and/or indirect effects on periodontal remodeling via altered periodontal structure or tissue mineralization.