FHL2 mediates tooth development and human dental pulp cell differentiation into odontoblasts, partially by interacting with Runx2
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The differentiation of mesenchymal cells in tooth germ and dental pulp cells into odontoblasts is crucial for dentin formation, and the transcription factor runt-related transcription factor (Runx2) is necessary for odontoblast differentiation. Our previous study demonstrated that four and a half LIM domains 2 (FHL2) may play an important role in tooth development and human dental pulp cell differentiation. This study aimed to determine whether FHL2 mediated the mesenchymal cells in tooth development and human dental pulp cell differentiation into odontoblasts by interacting with Runx2. The expression patterns of FHL2 and Runx2 were examined at the early stages of mouse molar development using double immunofluorescence staining. Western blot analysis and co-immunoprecipitation (Co-IP) were conducted for the preliminary study of the relationship between FHL2 and Runx2 in human dental pulp cell differentiation into odontoblasts. Results of double immunofluorescence staining showed that FHL2 and Runx2 exhibited similar expression patterns at the early stages of tooth development. Western blot analysis indicated that the expression patterns of FHL2 and Runx2 were synchronized on day 7 of induction, whereas those on day 14 differed. Co-IP analysis revealed positive bands of protein complexes, revealing the interaction of FHL2 and Runx2 on days 0, 7 and 14 of induction. Our data suggested that FHL2 might interact with Runx2 to mediate mesenchymal cell differentiation at the early stages of tooth development and human dental pulp cell differentiation.
KeywordsOdontoblast differentiation FHL2 Runx2 Tooth development Dental pulp cells
Supported by Shandong Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. ZR2014HQ075), Medical Health and Development Research Foundation of Shandong Province (Grant No. 2013WS0214) and Science and Technology Development Project of Jinan City (Grant No. 201121042).
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