Mesenchymal Stem Cells Derived from Human Inflamed Dental Pulp Exhibit Impaired Immunomodulatory Capacity In Vitro

J Endod. 2020 Aug;46(8):1091-1098.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.joen.2020.05.003. Epub 2020 May 15.


Introduction: Dental pulp stem cells (DPSC) are very attractive in regenerative medicine. In this study, we focused on the characterization of the functional properties of mesenchymal stem cells derived from DPSCs. Currently, it is unknown whether inflammatory conditions present in an inflamed dental pulp tissue could alter the immunomodulatory properties of DPSCs. This study aimed to evaluate the immunomodulatory capacity in vitro of DPSCs derived from healthy and inflamed dental pulp.

Methods: DPSCs from 10 healthy and inflamed dental pulps (irreversible pulpitis) were characterized according to the minimal criteria of the International Society for Cell Therapy, proliferation, differential potential, and colony-forming units. Furthermore, the immunomodulatory capacity of DPSCs was tested on the proliferation of T lymphocytes by flow cytometry and the in vitro enzyme activity of indoleamine 2, 3-dioxygenase.

Results: There were no significant differences in the DPSC characteristics and properties such as immunophenotype, tridifferentiation, colony-forming units, and proliferation of the DPSCs derived from normal and inflamed pulp tissue. Furthermore, there were significant differences in the immunomodulatory capacity of DPSCs obtained from human healthy dental pulp and with the diagnosis of irreversible pulpitis.

Conclusions: Our results showed that DPSCs isolated from inflamed dental pulp showed typical characteristics of MSCs and diminished immunosuppressive capacity in vitro in comparison with MSCs derived from healthy dental pulp. Further investigation in vivo is needed to clarify the mechanism of this diminished immunosuppressive capacity.

Keywords: Healthy dental pulp; inflamed dental pulp; mesenchymal stem cells; pulpitis.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dental Pulp
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells*