, Volume 76, Issue 2, pp 136-145
Date: 04 Nov 2004

Ovariectomy Reduces the Gelatinolytic Activity and Expression of Matrix Metalloproteinases and Collagen in Rat Molar Extraction Wounds

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Osteoporosis is commonly associated with estrogen deficiency. However, the mechanisms by which the lack of this hormone causes bone loss are poorly understood. The bone structure of the oral cavity seems to be affected by estrogen deficiency, since a delayed healing process after tooth extraction has been observed after ovariectomy in rats. The aim of this study was to describe the effect of the absence of estrogen on the expression and activity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMC)-2 and -9 and expression of types I and III collagens in the alveolar granulation tissue of young female rats after tooth extraction. Sixty-six, four-week-old female rats underwent bilateral ovariectomies (OVX) or sham operations. Three weeks later, both first and second mandibular molars were extracted and the animals were killed by cervical dislocation 3, 5, or 7 days after tooth extraction. The granulation tissues were collected from the extracted alveolar sockets and used for zymographic, Western blot, or reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis. There was a gradual increase on the expression of all studied proteins as well as MMP-2 and -9 activities in the periods after surgery. In contrast, OVX animals showed a significant decrease in the gelatinolytic activities and expression of MMP-2 and -9 and types I and III collagens. The results presented here in suggest that the absence of estrogen may possibly contribute to the delayed alveolar wound healing by interfering with the extracellular matrix turnover.