Roles of autophagy in orthodontic tooth movement.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

INTRODUCTION: Orthodontic tooth movement (OTM) relies on efficient remodeling of alveolar bone. While a well-controlled inflammatory response is essential during OTM, the mechanism regulating inflammation is unknown. Autophagy, a conserved catabolic pathway, has been shown to protect cells from excess inflammation in disease states. We hypothesize that autophagy plays a role in regulating inflammation during OTM. METHODS: A split-mouth design was used to force load molars in adult male mice, carrying a GFP-LC3 transgene for in vivo detection of autophagy. Confocal microscopy, Western blot, and quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses were used to evaluate autophagy activation in tissues of loaded and control molars at time points after force application. Rapamycin, a Food and Drug Administration-approved immunosuppressant, was injected to evaluate induction of autophagy. RESULTS: Autophagy activity increases shortly after loading, primarily on the compression side of the tooth, and is closely associated with inflammatory cytokine expression and osteoclast recruitment. Daily administration of rapamycin, an autophagy activator, led to reduced tooth movement and osteoclast recruitment, suggesting that autophagy downregulates the inflammatory response and bone turnover during OTM. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first demonstration that shows that autophagy is induced by orthodontic loading and plays a role during OTM, likely via negative regulation of inflammatory response and bone turnover. Exploring roles of autophagy in OTM holds great promise, as aberrant autophagy is associated with periodontal disease and its related systemic inflammatory disorders.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Li, Y; Jacox, LA; Coats, S; Kwon, J; Xue, P; Tang, N; Rui, Z; Wang, X; Kim, Y-I; Wu, TJ; Lee, Y-T; Wong, SW; Chien, CH; Cheng, C-W; Gross, R; Lin, F-C; Tseng, H; Martinez, J; Ko, C-C

Published Date

  • May 1, 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 159 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 582 - 593

PubMed ID

  • 33771430

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1097-6752

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.ajodo.2020.01.027


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States