Gingival epithelium has an important role regarding immunosurveillance in the periodontal tissue. Additionally, the epithelium serves as a mechanical barrier. Hereby, the proteins collagen and cadherin (transmembrane protein, forming adherent junctions to hold cells within tissues together) play an important role. Electromagnetic or magnetic fields are used for treatment in periodontal diseases, but the effects on healthy gingival tissue are not known yet.
Three groups of rats were examined (n=9 per group): 1.) control group, 2.) exposure to sinusoidal magnetic field and 3.) exposure to pulsed magnetic field (PEMF).
|Chamber||rats freely moving in a methacrylate cage inside the coils|
|Setup||two pairs of Helmholtz coils (70 cm in diameter) in a Faraday cage (130 x 65 x 80 cm); magnet was constructed by winding 125 turns of insulated soft copper wire with a diameter of 1.5 mm; coils were vertically placed facing one another; distance between coils: 47 cm|
In both exposed groups, the number of lymphocytes significantly increased, the proliferation of epithelial cells was significantly enhanced and the rete ridges (epidermal thickenings which serve as junctions between epidermis and dermis) were significantly elongated in comparison to the control group. Additionally, in the exposed groups, a significant higher level of E-cadherin was detected in the epithelium and the basal cell layer than in the control group, whereas regarding collagen type IV only in the basal cell layer a significant higher expression level was found.
The authors conclude, that extremely low frequency magnetic fields may be used in gingival diseases associated with defects in the epithelial barrier.