Expression and regulation of novel human β-defensins in gingival keratinocytes

P. Premratanachai, S. Joly, G. K. Johnson, P. B. McCray, H. P. Jia, Janet M. Guthmiller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


This study evaluated the expression and regulation of β-defensins DEFB-104 and the recently identified DEFB-105-14 in gingival keratinocytes. Keratinocytes from healthy subjects were exposed to cytokines, Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide or Candida species. Total RNA was extracted and defensin expression analyzed by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Three patterns of expression were seen: no expression, constitutive expression and inducible expression. Constitutive mRNA expression was evident for DEFB-104, 107, 109, 111, and 112. DEFB-108 and 114 were induced by interleukin (IL)-1β and Candida species. For DEFB-108 expression, synergism was observed when IL-1β was combined with tumor necrosis factor-α or interferon-γ. Downregulation of DEFB-109 occurred following treatment with Candida albicans. These findings suggest a role for multiple β-defensins in response to oral infection. Further investigation is needed to better understand their function, both in terms of antimicrobial activities and contributions to innate and acquired immunity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-117
Number of pages7
JournalOral Microbiology and Immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Antimicrobial peptides
  • Gene expression
  • Gingival keratinocytes
  • Innate immunity
  • β-defensins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • General Dentistry
  • Microbiology (medical)


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