The effects of combined low level laser therapy and mesenchymal stem cells on bone regeneration in rabbit calvarial defects

J Photochem Photobiol B. 2015 Oct:151:180-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2015.08.002. Epub 2015 Aug 11.


Objective: This study evaluated the effect of Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) and Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) on bone regeneration.

Background data: Although several studies evaluated the effects of MSCs and LLLT, there is little information available regarding in vivo application of LLLT in conjunction with MSCs.

Methods: Forty-eight circular bone defects (6mm in diameter) were prepared in the calvaria of 12 New-Zealand white rabbits. The defects of each animal were randomly assigned to 4 groups: (C) no treatment; (L) applying LLLT; (SC) filled with MSCs; (SCL) application of both MSCs and LLLT. LLL was applied on alternate days at wavelength of 810 nm, power density of 0.2 W/cm(2) and a fluency of 4 J/cm(2) using a Gallium-Aluminum-Arsenide (GaAlAs) diode laser. The animals were sacrificed after 3 weeks and then histological samples were evaluated to determine the amount of new bone formation and the remaining scaffold and inflammation.

Results: The histological evaluation showed a statistically significant increase in new bone formation of LLLT group relative to the control and the other two experimental groups (p<0.05). There was no significant difference in bone formation of the control group compared to experimental groups filled with MSCs. Laser irradiation had no significant effect on resorption of the scaffold material. In addition, inflammation was significantly reduced in LLLT group compared to the control defects and the other two experimental groups.

Conclusion: Low level laser therapy could be effective in bone regeneration but there is no evidence of a synergistic effect when applied in conjunction with MSCs.

Keywords: Animal study; Bone regeneration; Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT); Stem cell.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autografts
  • Bone Regeneration / physiology
  • Bone Regeneration / radiation effects*
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / cytology
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / physiology
  • Rabbits
  • Skull* / injuries
  • Skull* / surgery
  • Tissue Scaffolds