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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 2013, Article ID 808367, 9 pages
Research Article

Potential Immune Modularly Role of Glycine in Oral Gingival Inflammation

1Department of Orthodontics, Welschnonnenstraße 17, 53111 Bonn, Germany
2Department of Prosthodontics, Preclinical Education, and Material Sciences, Welschnonnenstraße 17, 53111 Bonn, Germany
3Department of Periodontology, Operative and Preventive Dentistry, Welschnonnenstraße 17, 53111 Bon, Germany
4Experimental Dento-Maxillo-Facial Medicine (CRU 208), Welschnonnenstraße 17, 53111 Bonn, Germany

Received 6 August 2013; Accepted 2 October 2013

Academic Editor: Lenin Pavón

Copyright © 2013 Teresa Schaumann et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Gingival epithelial cells (GECs) represent a physical barrier against bacteria and are involved in the processes of innate immunity. Recently, an anti-inflammatory and immune-modulatory effect of the amino acid glycine has been demonstrated. However, there is only little information about the immune-modulatory effects of glycine in oral tissues. This study aimed to investigate the existence and role of the glycine receptor in gingival tissue analyzing tissues/cells from extracted human molars via immunohistochemical analysis. In vitro, GECs were challenged by inflammatory conditions with IL-1β alone or in combination with glycine and analyzed for cytokine expression of IL6/IL8 via real-time PCR. On protein level, the effect of nuclear translocalization of NFκB protein p65 was analyzed using immunofluorescence analysis. A distinct proof of the GlyR in oral gingival tissue and keratinocytes could be demonstrated. Isolated challenge of the keratinocytes with IL-1β as well as with glycine resulted in an upregulation of IL6 and IL8 mRNA expression and activation of NFκB pathway. The presence of glycine in combination with the inflammatory stimulus led to a significant decrease in inflammatory parameters. These results indicate a possible anti-inflammatory role of glycine in gingival inflammation and encourage further research on the utility of glycine in the prevention or therapy of inflammatory periodontitis.