Function of Host Defence Peptide LL-37 in Human Periodontal Disease

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


Objectives: Fibroblasts play a significant role as regulators of the host response in periodontal disease, responding to bacterial stimulation by producing an array of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. LL-37, a host defence peptide, inhibits LPS-induced cytokine signalling in macrophages, suggesting an immunomodulatory role. The objective was to investigate the interaction between LL-37 and gingival fibroblasts – both its direct regulation of fibroblast activity and its effect on fibroblast response to LPS activation. Methods: Human gingival fibroblasts (HGFs) were incubated for 24 hours in the presence of either P. gingivalis LPS (10µg/ml) or E. coli LPS (10ng/ml) along with LL-37 (0-50 µg/ml). IL-6 and IL-8 production by HGFs in the conditioned medium was determined by ELISA. Western blot was performed to determine the effect of LL-37 on LPS -induced IκBα degradation in HGFs following LPS stimulation over 2 hours. DNA microarray analysis was performed on cell populations incubated for 6 hr in the presence or absence of the peptide. Confirmation of LL-37 effects on specific gene expression was obtained by QPCR. Results: At low concentrations (≤ 5 µg/ml) LL-37 significantly inhibited LPS-induced cytokine production by HGFs. At higher concentrations LL-37 induced IL-8 production independent of LPS. Addition of LL-37 blocked LPS-induced IκBα degradation in HGFs. Microarray analysis revealed that LL-37 (50µg/ml) upregulated a significant number of cytokines and chemokines by > 5 fold. Upregulation of five of these, CXCL1, CXCL2, CXCL3, IL-24 and IL-8 was confirmed by Q-PCR. Conclusion: The host defence peptide LL-37, the only known human cathelicidin, appears to have pleiotrophic effects in innate immunity. At least some of these are mediated through cytokine and chemokine signalling networks. The ability of LL-37 to reduce bacterial LPS-induced cytokine production in gingival fibroblasts, at low concentrations, suggests a potential therapeutic role in the management of periodontal disease.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jul 2010
EventIADR 88th General Session Meeting, Barcelona - Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 14 Jul 201017 Jul 2010


ConferenceIADR 88th General Session Meeting, Barcelona


Dive into the research topics of 'Function of Host Defence Peptide LL-37 in Human Periodontal Disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this