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J Periodontal Res. 2013 Aug;48(4):433-42. doi: 10.1111/jre.12023. Epub 2012 Oct 28.

Effects of cranberry components on human aggressive periodontitis gingival fibroblasts.

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  • 1Department of Bioscience Research, College of Dentistry, The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN 38163, USA.



Aggressive periodontitis (AgP) causes rapid periodontal breakdown involving AgP gingival fibroblast production of cytokines [i.e. interleukin (IL)-6, a bone metabolism regulator], and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-3. Lipopolysaccharide upregulates fibroblast IL-6 and MMP-3, via transcription factors (i.e. NF-κB). Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) inhibits lipopolysaccharide-stimulated macrophage and normal gingival fibroblast activities, but little is known of its effects on AgP fibroblasts. Objectives of this study are to use AgP fibroblasts, to determine cytotoxicity of cranberry components or periodontopathogen (Fusobacterium nucleatum, Porphyromonas gingivalis) lipopolysaccharide ± cranberry components, and effects of cranberry components on lipopolysaccharide-stimulated NF-κB activation and IL-6 and MMP-3 production.


AgP fibroblasts were incubated ≤ 6 d with high molecular weight non-dialyzable material (NDM) (derived from cranberry juice (1-500 μg/mL) or lipopolysaccharide (1 μg/mL) ± NDM. Membrane damage and viability were assessed by enzyme activity released into cell supernatants and activity of a mitochondrial enzyme, respectively. Secreted IL-6 and MMP-3 were measured by ELISA. NF-κB p65 was measured via binding to an oligonucleotide containing the NF-κB consensus site. Data were analyzed using analysis of variance and Scheffe's F procedure for post hoc comparisons.


Short-term exposure to NDM, or lipopolysaccharide ± NDM caused no membrane damage. NDM (≤ 100 μg/mL) or lipopolysaccharide ± NDM had no effect on viability ≤ 7 d exposure. NDM (50 μg/mL) inhibited lipopolysaccharide-stimulated p65 (P ≤ 0.003) and constitutive or lipopolysaccharide-stimulated MMP-3 (P ≤ 0.02). NDM increased AgP fibroblast constitutive or lipopolysaccharide-stimulated IL-6 (P ≤ 0.0001), but inhibited normal human gingival fibroblast IL-6 (P ≤ 0.01).


Lack of toxicity of low NDM concentrations, and its inhibition of NF-κB and MMP-3, suggest that cranberry components may regulate AgP fibroblast inflammatory responses. Distinct effects of NDM on AgP and gingival fibroblast production of IL-6 (which can have both positive and negative effects on bone metabolism) may reflect phenotypic differences in IL-6 regulation in the two cell types.

© 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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