Immunolocalization of platelet-derived growth factor A and B chains and PDGF-alpha and beta receptors in human gingival wounds

J Periodontal Res. 1997 Feb;32(2):209-14. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0765.1997.tb00526.x.


Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) is a polypeptide growth factor which has been implicated as a major mitogen involved in wound healing. The PDGF appears to promote periodontal regeneration; however, its distribution in gingival tissues is not known and how it participates in gingival wound healing is unclear. Using highly specific antibodies we have studied the distribution of PDGF A and B chains and alpha- and beta-PDGF receptors in healing human gingival wounds. Wounds were created by making a 0.75 mm deep incision in the papilla and healthy gingiva and biopsies were obtained from the same site after 8 h and 1, 3, 7, 14 and 21 d. Frozen sections were immunostained with affinity purified antibodies. The results showed that both epithelium and fibrin clot manifested positive immunostaining for anti-PDGF-A and B-chain antibodies. Staining was present in unwounded and wounded epithelia, and in the fibrin clot it appeared to be more intense for the PDGF-A chain. Blood vessels in connective tissue were also positive while other areas were largely negative. No significant staining was detectable in healthy tissues for anti-PDGF-alpha or -beta receptor antibodies. However, the wound site began to manifest positive immunostaining fro anti-beta-receptor antibody after 3 d of healing, became maximal at 7 d, and then decreased. Our data indicate, but do not prove, that gingival epithelium may be a source of PDGF A and B chains and that the A chain may have a more prominent role to play during early stages of healing. Expression of PDGF beta-receptor appears later at the wound site, indicating that the PDGF B isomer may regulate later wound healing events.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies
  • Becaplermin
  • Biopsy
  • Blood Coagulation
  • Blood Vessels / pathology
  • Coloring Agents
  • Connective Tissue / pathology
  • Epithelium / injuries
  • Epithelium / pathology
  • Fibrin
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gene Expression
  • Gingiva / injuries*
  • Gingiva / pathology
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Mitogens / analysis
  • Periodontium / physiology
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / analysis*
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-sis
  • Receptors, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / analysis*
  • Receptors, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / genetics
  • Regeneration
  • Time Factors
  • Wound Healing


  • Antibodies
  • Coloring Agents
  • Mitogens
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-sis
  • platelet-derived growth factor A
  • Becaplermin
  • Fibrin
  • Receptors, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor