Differential regulation of NPY and SP receptor expression in STRO‐1+ve PDLSCs by inflammatory cytokines

Lewis Winning, Ikhlas A. El Karim, Gerard J. Linden, Christopher R. Irwin, Simon A. Killough, Fionnuala T. Lundy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aims of this study were to investigate neuropeptide receptor expression regulation on STRO-1 +ve periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs) in response to inflammatory cytokines and to investigate a potential osteogenic effect of neuropeptides.

Nerve fibres innervating the periodontal tissues in humans contain several neuropeptides including neuropeptide Y and substance P. The role of neuropeptide receptors on PDLSCs, including their response to the local inflammatory environment of periodontitis, is currently unknown.

A homogenous population of STRO-1 +ve PDLSCs was prepared by immunomagnetic separation of cells obtained by the tissue out-growth method from healthy premolar teeth from a single donor. Regulation of gene expression of the neuropeptide Y Y1 receptor and substance P receptor tachykinin receptor 1 was investigated. A potential osteogenic effect of neuropeptide Y and substance P was also investigated by measuring alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, Alizarin red staining and quantifying osteogenic gene expression.

Treatment of STRO-1 +ve PDLSCs with tumour necrosis factor-alpha or interleukin 1-beta up-regulated the expression of the neuropeptide Y’s Y1 receptor, but down-regulated substance P’s receptor. Significantly increased ALP activity was observed in STRO-1 +ve PDLSCs treated with neuropeptide Y but not substance P. Further studies showed that neuropeptide Y had a modest osteogenic effect on cells at both a functional level and a gene level.

Expression of the neuropeptide Y Y1 receptor gene on STRO-1 +ve PDLSCs was sensitive to local inflammatory cytokines. Treatment of cells with neuropeptide Y was found to produce a modest enhanced osteogenic effect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186-194
JournalJournal of periodontal research
Issue number1
Early online date13 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


  • Periodontics


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