Expression of osteocalcin in cementoblasts forming acellular cementum

M. Kagayama, H. C. Li, J. Zhu, Y. Sasano, Y. Hatakeyama, I. Mizoguchi

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To determine the phenotypic expression of cementoblasts responsible for acellular cementum, an immunohistochemical study was performed using a polyclonal antibody raised against the aminoterminal peptide of rat osteocalcin (OC). Maxillary first molars of Wistar male rats aged 2 and 3 wk were used for observations. Serial sections of decalcified paraffin embedded specimens were stained either with hematoxylin and eosin or with the anti-OC antibody. In 2-wk-old rats, apical roots were lined with the epithelial root sheath. A thin layer of acellular cementum was seen at most of the root surface, but was not seen near to root apex. In 3-wk-old rats, cellular cementum began to be formed at root apex, and acellular cementum became more thick than in 2-wk-old rats. Acellular and cellular cementum were lined with the fibroblast-like cells. Osteocalcin staining was detected in cells lining root surface in both 2- and 3-wk-old rats. Almost all cells lining cellular cementum were positive for OC. In contrast OC positive cells lining acellular cementum and root surface devoid of cementum appeared at a specific site of the root. The cells at the interradicular area of root surface were positive but the cells at the outer area (the opposite side of the interradicular area) were negative for OC. Osteoblasts and odontoblasts were positive with the antibody. The present results suggest that the OC expression of cementoblasts forming acellular cementum is similar to that of cells forming cellular cementum as well as osteoblasts and odontoblasts, and has a role for calcification of acellular cementum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-278
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Periodontal Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Apr


  • Acellular cementum
  • Cementoblasts
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Osteocalcin
  • Rat molars


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