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Int J Mol Med. 2017 Oct;40(4):1253-1260. doi: 10.3892/ijmm.2017.3117. Epub 2017 Sep 1.

Insulin-like growth factor-1 promotes the proliferation and odontoblastic differentiation of human dental pulp cells under high glucose conditions.

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Department of Endodontics, School of Stomatology, China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning 110002, P.R. China.
Department of Periodontics, School of Stomatology, China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning 110002, P.R. China.


Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) promotes human dental pulp stem cell proliferation and osteogenic differentiation. However, the effects of IGF-1 on the proliferation, apoptosis and odontoblastic differentiation (mineralization) of dental pulp cells (DPCs) under high glucose (GLU) conditions remain unclear. In this study, isolated primary human DPCs were treated with various concentrations of high GLU. Cell proliferation and apoptosis were determined by Cell Counting Kit-8 and Annexin V-FITC/PI assays, respectively. The cells were cultured in odontoblastic induction medium containing various concentrations of high GLU. Odontoblastic differentiation was determined by alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity assay. Mineralization formation was evaluated by von Kossa staining. The expression levels of IGF family members were measured by western blot analysis and RT-qPCR during proliferation and differentiation. The cells were then exposed to 25 mM GLU and various concentrations of IGF-1. Cell proliferation, apoptosis, ALP activity, mineralization formation and the levels of mineralization-related proteins were then evaluated. Our results revealed that high GLU significantly inhibited cell proliferation and promoted cell apoptosis. GLU (25 and 50 mM) markedly reduced ALP activity and mineralization on days 7 and 14 after differentiation. The levels of IGF family members were markedly decreased by high GLU during proliferation and differentiation. However, IGF-1 significantly reversed the effects of high GLU on cell proliferation and apoptosis. Additionally, IGF-1 markedly restored the reduction of ALP activity and mineralization induced by high GLU. Our findings thus indicate that IGF-1 attenuates the high GLU-induced inhibition of DPC proliferation, differentiation and mineralization.

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