Porcine sheath proteins show periodontal ligament regeneration activity

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The purpose of this study was to identify the periodontal regeneration factors of enamel protein extracts that induce cementum and bone regeneration in vivo. Cementum regeneration, one aspect of periodontal ligament regeneration, was examined using a buccal dehiscence model of dogs. Enamel matrix protein fractions were prepared from developing porcine incisors. Cementum-regeneration activity was found to reside in a protein aggregate composed of amelogenins and sheath proteins extracted from newly formed secretory enamel. Cementum-regeneration activity was not observed in protein fractions containing only amelogenin or its derivatives. The sheath proteins were purified to homogeneity and tested for alkaline phosphatase (ALP)-inducing activity on human periodontal ligament (HPDL) cells. The induction of ALP was observed following application of the 17-kDa sheath protein but not of the lower-molecular-weight sheath proteins. Although transforming growth factor-β1 also shows ALP-inducing activity, contamination with growth factors was excluded because synthetic peptides (based on the sheath protein's sequence) also showed ALP-inducing activity. The 17-kDa sheath protein showed both cytodifferentiation and cementum-regeneration activity, but it is unclear whether its cementum-regeneration activity is derived from its ALP-inducing activity on HPDL cells.

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