Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2019, Article ID 1529520, 15 pages
Research Article

Methylene Blue-Mediated Photodynamic Therapy Induces Macrophage Apoptosis via ROS and Reduces Bone Resorption in Periodontitis

1Department of Prosthodontics, Shanghai Ninth People’s Hospital, College of Stomatology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200011, China
2Shanghai Key Laboratory of Stomatology & Shanghai Research Institute of Stomatology, National Clinical Research Center for Oral Diseases, Shanghai 200011, China
3Department of Oral Maxillofacial-Head and Neck Oncology, Shanghai Ninth People’s Hospital, College of Stomatology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200011, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Haixin Qian; moc.621@7618naiqrd and Ting Jiao; moc.621@gnit_oaij

Received 20 December 2018; Revised 1 April 2019; Accepted 6 May 2019; Published 14 August 2019

Academic Editor: Sander Bekeschus

Copyright © 2019 Chunlan Jiang 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.


Aim. To investigate whether methylene blue-mediated photodynamic therapy (MB-PDT) can affect the “fate” of macrophages in vitro or in periodontitis tissues and to explore the potential mechanism. Methods. For in vitro treatments, THP-1 macrophages were divided into three experimental groups: C/control, no treatment; MB, methylene blue treatment; and MB-PDT, MB and laser irradiation treatment. Then, apoptosis and apoptosis-related proteins were detected in each group. For in vivo treatments, periodontitis was ligature-induced in the first molars of the bilateral maxilla in 12 Sprague Dawley (SD) rats. After six weeks, the ligatures were removed and all the induced molars underwent scaling and root planning (SRP). Then, the rats were divided into three groups according to the following treatments: SRP, saline solution; MB, phenothiazinium dye; and MB-PDT, MB and laser irradiation. Apoptotic macrophages, inflammation levels, and alveolar bone resorption in the periodontal tissues of rats were analyzed in each group. Results. In vitro, flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that 10 μM MB and 40 J/cm2 laser irradiation maximized the apoptosis rate (34.74%) in macrophages. Fluorescence probe and Western blot analyses showed that MB-PDT induced macrophage apoptosis via reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the mitochondrial-dependent apoptotic pathway. Conversely, the addition of exogenous antioxidant glutathione (GSH) and the pan-caspase inhibitor Z-VAD-FMK markedly reduced the apoptotic response in macrophages. In vivo, immunohistochemistry, histology, radiographic, and molecular biology experiments revealed fewer infiltrated macrophages, less bone loss, and lower IL-1β and TNF-α levels in the MB-PDT group than in the SRP and MB groups (). Immunohistochemistry analysis also detected apoptotic macrophages in the MB-PDT group. Conclusion. MB-PDT could induce macrophage apoptosis in vitro and in rats with periodontitis. This may be another way for MB-PDT to relieve periodontitis in addition to its antimicrobial effect. Meanwhile, MB-PDT induced apoptosis in THP-1 macrophages via the mitochondrial caspase pathway.