Journal of biomaterials applications

Odontogenic stimulation of human dental pulp cells with bioactive nanocomposite fiber.

PMID 25098335


The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of a composite nanofibrous matrix made of biopolymer blend polycaprolactone-gelatin (BP) and mesoporous bioactive glass nanoparticles (BGNs) on the odontogenic differentiation of human dental pulp cells (HDPCs). BGN-BP nanomatrices, with BGN content of up to 20 wt%, were produced via electrospinning. The differentiation of the HDPCs was evaluated by using an ALP activity assay, calcified nodule formation, and mRNA expression for markers. Integrin and its underlying signal pathways were assessed via reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and Western blot analysis. Although cell growth and attachment on the BGN-BP nanomatrix was similar to that on BP, ALP activity, mineralized nodule formation, and mRNA, expressions involving ALP, osteocalcin, osteopontin, dentin sialophosphoprotein, and dentin matrix protein-1 were greater on BGN-BP. BGN-BP upregulated the key adhesion receptors (integrin components α1, α2, α5, and β1) and activated integrin downstream pathways, such as phosphorylated-focal adhesion kinase (p-FAK), and p-paxillin. In addition, BGN-BP activated BMP receptors, BMP-2 mRNA, and p-Smad 1/5/8, and such activation was blocked by the BMP antagonist, noggin. Furthermore, BGN-BP induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase, protein kinase 38, and c-Jun-N-terminal kinase mitogen-activated protein kinases and activated expression of the transcription factors Runx2 and Osterix in HDPCs. Collectively, the results indicated for the first time that a BGN-BP composite nanomatrix promoted odontogenic differentiation of HDPCs through the integrin, BMP, and mitogen-activated protein kinases signaling pathway. Moreover, the nanomatrix is considered to be promising scaffolds for the culture of HDPCs and dental tissue engineering.