Dental pulp and periodontal ligament cells support osteoclastic differentiation

J Dent Res. 2009 Jul;88(7):609-14. doi: 10.1177/0022034509340008.


Odontoclasts and cementoclasts are considered to play major roles in the internal resorption of dentin and the external resorption of tooth roots. In this study, we evaluated the osteoclast-inducing ability of human dental pulp and periodontal ligament cells, which are mesenchymal cells in dental tissues. These cells expressed RANKL and OPG mRNA constitutively. As osteoclast precursors, CD14(+) monocytes derived from human peripheral blood were isolated, and incubated together with human dental pulp or periodontal ligament cells. Both cell types spontaneously induced the differentiation of CD14(+) monocytes into osteoclasts without osteotropic factors. These results suggest that dental pulp and periodontal ligament cells are involved in regulating the differentiation and function of osteoclasts.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Child
  • Coculture Techniques
  • Dental Pulp / cytology
  • Dental Pulp / metabolism
  • Dental Pulp / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lipopolysaccharide Receptors
  • Male
  • Monocytes
  • Osteoclasts / cytology*
  • Osteoclasts / physiology
  • Osteoprotegerin / biosynthesis
  • Periodontal Ligament / cytology
  • Periodontal Ligament / metabolism
  • Periodontal Ligament / physiology*
  • RANK Ligand / biosynthesis
  • Tooth Resorption / metabolism


  • Lipopolysaccharide Receptors
  • Osteoprotegerin
  • RANK Ligand