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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2016, Article ID 1431836, 10 pages
Research Article

Gold Nanoparticles Promote Proliferation of Human Periodontal Ligament Stem Cells and Have Limited Effects on Cells Differentiation

1Department of Periodontics, School & Hospital of Stomatology, Tongji University, Shanghai Engineering Research Center of Tooth Restoration and Regeneration, Shanghai 200072, China
2The Institute for Biomedical Engineering and Nanoscience, School of Medicine, Tongji University, 67 Chifeng Road, Shanghai 200092, China

Received 23 February 2016; Revised 26 May 2016; Accepted 29 June 2016

Academic Editor: Jorge Pérez-Juste

Copyright © 2016 Chen Li 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.


Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) had been widely applied in the practice and advancement of chemistry, biology, and medicine due to facility of synthesis and versatility in surface functionalization. Recent studies had shown that AuNPs can be applied to cells, affecting cellular physiological processes such as proliferation and differentiation. In this study, four diameters of AuNPs (20, 40, 60, and 80 nm) were cocultured with human periodontal ligament cells (hPDLCs) at six different concentrations. The optimal size and concentration of AuNPs were selected to treat human periodontal ligament stem cells (hPDLSCs) to evaluate proliferation. Moreover, the influence of AuNPs on multiple differentiation capacity of hPDLSCs was clarified. The results revealed that AuNPs (60 nm, 56 μM) can effectively promote the proliferation of hPDLCs/hPDLSCs in vitro, slightly enhance osteoblastic differentiation, and have no effect on adipogenic differentiation. In addition, the expression of COL-1, Runx2, BSP, and OCN was upregulated in the presence of AuNPs (60 nm, 56 μM). These results indicated that AuNPs (60 nm, 56 μM) can effectively promote the proliferation of hPDLCs/hPDLSCs and have no significant effect on the differentiation of hPDLSCs. These results provide an insight on the advantage of implementing of AuNPs on hPDLSCs culture and expose the influence of these materials on periodontal tissue engineering.