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J Endod. 2005 Jan;31(1):17-8.

Detection of receptor activator of NF-kappa beta ligand in apical periodontitis.

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  • 1Division of Surgical Therapeutic and Bioengineering Science, School of Dentistry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA , USA.


A novel protein known as receptor activator of NF-kappa beta ligand (RANK-L) has been identified as a potential osteoclast differentiation factor. However, comparatively little is known about the expression of RANK-L in the pathogenesis of periradicular lesions. In this study, RANK-L expression was evaluated in biopsy specimens from apical periodontitis. Tissue samples from 21 periapical lesions were collected. RANK-L mRNA was isolated by using the guanidinium isothiocyanate acid phenol method. This was followed by generation of cDNA using specific primer for RANK-L by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction amplification. RANK-L expression in each periapical sample was assessed by agarose gel electrophoresis. Gel electrophoresis analysis showed a single band of 385 bp corresponding to RANK-L in every periapical lesion. By contrast, normal control tissue showed no detectable RANK-L mRNA expression. In conclusion, RANK-L may play a role in apical periodontitis-induced bone resorption.

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