Material dependent differences in inflammatory gene expression by giant cells during the foreign body reaction

J Biomed Mater Res A. 2007 Dec 1;83(3):879-86. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.31420.


Multinucleated giant cells (GCs) are often observed in the foreign body reaction against implanted materials. The in vivo function of GCs in this inflammatory process remains to be elucidated. GCs degrade collagen implants in rats and may also orchestrate the inflammatory process via the expression and secretion of modulators, such as cytokines and chemokines. In this study, we show that the gene expression of PMN chemoattractants, CXCL1/KC and CXCL2/MIP-2, is high in GCs micro-dissected from explanted Dacron, cross-linked collagen (HDSC), and bioactive ureido-pyrimidinone functionalized oligocaprolactone (bioactive PCLdiUPy). Conversely, the gene expression levels of TGFbeta and pro-angiogenic mediators VEGF and FGF were found to be low in these GCs as compared with the expression levels in total explants. GCs in bioactive PCLdiUPy displayed high cytokine and angiogenic mediator expression compared with GCs isolated from the two other studied materials, whereas chemokine gene expression in GCs isolated form HDSC was low. Thus, GCs adopt their expression profile in response to the material that is encountered.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biocompatible Materials / adverse effects*
  • Cytokines / biosynthesis*
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / metabolism*
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / pathology
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Giant Cells, Foreign-Body / metabolism*
  • Giant Cells, Foreign-Body / pathology
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism*
  • Materials Testing
  • Prostheses and Implants / adverse effects*
  • Rats


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Cytokines
  • Inflammation Mediators