Objectives and background: Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is a 21-amino acid peptide with multifunctional regulation. ET-1 expresses in various cells during inflammation. The present study aimed to examine the ET-1 expression in oral epithelial cells after infection with the periodontal pathogen and to investigate the presence of ET-1 in human inflamed and uninflamed gingival tissues. Materials and methods: The KB cells were infected with Porphyromonas gingivalis and the expression level of ET-1 was examined using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The immunohistochemical analysis of ET-1 was performed in gingival tissues obtained from patients. In addition, the ET-1 mRNA expression in each tissue was also investigated by RT-PCR. Results: The expression of ET-1 in KB cells was strongly induced by the P. gingivalis infection. On the other hand, the strong immunoreactivity for ET-1 was observed in the epithelium and vascular endothelial cells of the inflamed gingival tissue. Furthermore, the level of ET-1 mRNA was greater in the inflamed tissues. Conclusion: These results suggested that the expression level of ET-1 in gingival epithelial cells might be enhanced during the periodontal inflammation.
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