Cementum-derived attachment protein (CAP) is a 56 kDa collagenous protein that promotes attachment of mesenchymal cells. Previous studies have shown that the presence of CAP is restricted to cementum in adult human tissues. In this study, we report generation of a monoclonal antibody against CAP and its use for the investigation of CAP in developing bovine tooth germs. Mice were immunized with CAP purified from bovine cementum, and a monoclonal antibody, 3G9, was produced. Immunohistochemical staining of bovine tooth germ at root forming stage using 3G9 antibody showed that the tissue distribution of CAP expression was limited to cementum matrix and cementoblasts during cementogenesis. Alveolar bone did not stain with the 3G9 antibody, whereas anti-type I collagen stained positively. CAP was purified from bovine tooth germs with immunoaffinity purification using the 3G9 antibody. Examination of the immunoaffinity-purified fraction showed that CAP existed in tooth germ as a 65 kDa protein. The protein was susceptible to bacterial collagenase. To investigate the possible biological function of CAP during cementogenesis, we isolated dental follicle cells from the bovine tooth germ, and showed that they adhered to surfaces containing CAP. These data demonstrate that CAP is expressed by bovine cementoblasts as a 65 kDa protein and that the CAP may have a function in cementogenesis.
- Antibody to attachment protein
- Cementum-derived attachment protein
- Dental follicle cells