Gingival transcriptomic patterns of macrophage polarization during initiation, progression, and resolution of periodontitis

Octavio A. Gonzalez, Sreenatha S. Kirakodu, Linh M. Nguyen, Jeffrey L. Ebersole

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Phenotypic and functional heterogeneity of macrophages is clearly a critical component of their effective functions in innate and adaptive immunity. This investigation hypothesized that altered profiles of gene expression in gingival tissues in health, disease, and resolution would reflect changes in macrophage phenotypes occurring in these tissues. The study used a nonhuman primate model to evaluate gene expression profiles as footprints of macrophage variation using a longitudinal experimental model of ligature-induced periodontitis in animals from 3 to 23 years of age to identify aging effects on the gingival environment. Significant differences were observed in distribution of expressed gene levels for M0, M1, and M2 macrophages in healthy tissues with the younger animals showing the least expression. M0 gene expression increased with disease in all but the aged group, while M1 was increased in adult and young animals, and M2 in all age groups, as early as disease initiation (within 0.5 months). Numerous histocompatibility genes were increased with disease, except in the aged samples. An array of cytokines/chemokines representing both M1 and M2 cells were increased with disease showing substantial increases with disease initiation (e.g. IL1A, CXCL8, CCL19, CCL2, CCL18), although the aged tissues showed a more limited magnitude of change across these macrophage genes. The analytics of macrophage genes at sites of gingival health, disease, and resolution demonstrated distinct profiles of host response interactions that may help model the disease mechanisms occurring with the formation of a periodontal lesion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-268
Number of pages21
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Immunology. All rights reserved.


  • aging
  • macrophage
  • nonhuman primate
  • periodontitis
  • transcriptome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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