Transfer of the bone morphogenetic protein 4 gene into rat periodontal ligament by in vivo electroporation

Shinobu Tsuchiya, Mirei Chiba, Koshi Kishimoto, Harukazu Nakamura, Masahiro Tsuchiya, Haruhide Hayashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Objective Regulation of alveolar bone metabolism is required in clinical dentistry. The aim of the present study was to establish a method for gene transfer into the periodontal ligament (PDL) by in vivo electroporation with a plasmid vector and to investigate the effects of BMP-4 transfer into the PDL. Design Plasmids containing mouse BMP-4 cDNA (pCAGGS-BMP4) were transfected into cultured rat PDL cells by in vitro electroporation, and BMP-4 production and secretion were detected by immunocytochemistry and western blotting. Next, pCAGGS-BMP4 was injected into the PDL of rats, and electroporation was performed in vivo, using original paired-needle electrodes. BMP-4 expression was examined by immunohistochemical staining 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days after electroporation. Control groups were injected with pCAGGS by electroporation, injected with pCAGGS-BMP4 without electroporation, or subjected to neither injection nor electroporation. Results In vitro-transfected rat PDL cells exhibited production and secretion of the mature-form BMP-4. After in vivo electroporation of pCAGGS-BMP4, site-specific BMP-4 expression peaked on day 3, gradually decreased until day 14, and was absent by day 21. We observed no unfavorable effects such as inflammation, degeneration, or necrosis. Conclusions Gene transfer by electroporation with plasmid DNA vectors has several advantages over other methods, including the non-viral vector, non-immunogenic effects, site-specific expression, simplicity, cost-effectiveness, and limited histological side effects. Our results indicate that the method is useful for gene therapy targeting the periodontal tissue, which regulates alveolar bone remodeling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-132
Number of pages10
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Feb 1


  • BMP-4
  • Gene transfer
  • In vivo electroporation
  • Periodontal ligament

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Dentistry(all)
  • Cell Biology


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