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J Periodontol. 2005 May;76(5):696-704.

Syndecan-1 expression during the formation of junctional epithelium.

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Periodontology, Department of Hard Tissue Engineering, Graduate School, Tokyo Medical and Dental University Tokyo, Japan.



Syndecans are cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans (PG) which can bind to and modulate the action of growth factors and extracellular matrix components (ECM). Syndecan- 1 has been shown to play important roles during early tooth development and wound healing and repair. Among diverse cells and tissues that comprise the periodontium, the junctional epithelium (JE) constitutes a region of significant anatomic and clinical importance, but the nature of inductive signals and molecules involved in its formation is still unclear. Therefore, this work examines if syndecan-1 is associated with formation of JE, and the distribution of other syndecan family members in the epithelium.


In situ hybridization and immunohistochemical techniques were performed using oral tissues from 4-day-old to 10-week-old mice to investigate the expression of syndecan- 1, -2, -3 and -4 mRNAs and their corresponding proteins.


Based on in situ hybridization experiments, all syndecan mRNAs were detected in sulcular epithelium (SE), gingival epithelium (GE), and JE with varying intensity and distribution. Syndecan-1 immunostaining was localized on the cell surface while that of syndecan-2 did not show clear membrane localization. Our experiments in the developing tooth demonstrated that syndecan-1 protein followed characteristic patterns of expression during JE formation and that immunoreactivity for syndecan-1 protein decreased with age when JE cells underwent terminal differentiation.


Results of syndecan-1 mRNA and protein expression patterns suggested that this proteoglycan might be an important molecule during the formation of JE.

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