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Cell Tissue Res. 2013 Jun;352(3):551-9. doi: 10.1007/s00441-013-1604-z. Epub 2013 Mar 27.

Estrogen deficiency inhibits the odonto/osteogenic differentiation of dental pulp stem cells via activation of the NF-κB pathway.

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Institute of Stomatology, Nanjing Medical University, 140 Hanzhong Road, Nanjing, Jiangsu, 210029, People's Republic of China.


Various factors can affect the functions of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs). However, little knowledge is available about the effects of estrogen deficiency on the differentiation of DPSCs. In this study, an estrogen-deficient rat model was constructed and multi-colony-derived DPSCs were obtained from the incisors of ovariectomized (OVX) or sham-operated rats. Odonto/osteogenic differentiation and the possible involvement of the nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) pathway in the OVX-DPSCs/Sham-DPSCs of these rats were then investigated. OVX-DPSCs presented decreased odonto/osteogenic capacity and an activated NF-κB pathway, as compared with Sham-DPSCs. When the cellular NF-κB pathway was specifically inhibited by BMS345541, the odonto/osteogenic potential in OVX-DPSCs was significantly upregulated. Thus, estrogen deficiency down-regulated the odonto/osteogenic differentiation of DPSCs by activating NF-κB signaling and inhibition of the NF-κB pathway effectively rescued the decreased differentiation potential of DPSCs.

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