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J Interferon Cytokine Res. 2017 Sep;37(9):406-414. doi: 10.1089/jir.2017.0023. Epub 2017 Aug 22.

Parthenolide Promotes Differentiation of Osteoblasts Through the Wnt/β-Catenin Signaling Pathway in Inflammatory Environments.

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1 Guangdong Province Key Laboratory of Stomatology, Department of Operative Dentistry and Endodontics, Guanghua School of Stomatology, Sun Yat-sen University , Guangzhou, People's Republic of China .
2 Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology , Brisbane, Australia .
3 Department of Environmental Health Sciences, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health , Los Angeles, California.


Periodontitis is a progressive inflammatory disease initiated by bacterial biofilm adhering to the tooth surface. If left untreated, periodontitis may lead to tooth loss and destruction of the alveolar bone. Regaining the lost alveolar bone is a clinical challenge because of the limited differentiation ability of osteoblasts in inflammatory environments. We have previously shown the anti-inflammatory and antiosteoclastogenic activities of parthenolide (PTL) in human periodontal ligament-derived cells by inhibiting nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) signaling, indicating its potential for periodontitis treatment. In this study, we further examined whether PTL could stimulate differentiation of osteoblasts from human alveolar bone in inflammatory conditions and investigated the involvement of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway during this process. The results showed that PTL significantly stimulated alkaline phosphatase activity, mineralization nodule formation, and osteogenesis-related gene/protein expression of osteoblasts under the stimulation of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). In addition, PTL inhibited the NF-κB/p50 pathway and resisted the inhibition of Wnt/β-catenin signaling induced by TNF-α. Our results indicate that the stimulatory effect of PTL on the differentiation of osteoblasts in inflammatory environments may involve the activation of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, and PTL may be a promising component for bone regeneration in periodontitis treatment.


Wnt/β-catenin; nuclear factor kappa B; osteoblast; osteogenesis; parthenolide; periodontitis


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