Odanacatib, a cathepsin K-specific inhibitor, inhibits inflammation and bone loss caused by periodontal diseases

Academic Article


  • Background: Periodontitis is a bacteria-induced inflammatory disease mainly affecting periodontal tissues, leading to periodontal inflammation, bone breakdown, and loss of the tooth. The main obstacle for treating periodontitis effectively is the difficulty in finding a target that can inhibit bone loss and inflammation simultaneously. Recent studies showed that cathepsin K (CTSK) might have functions in the immune system besides its role in osteoclasts. Thus, targeting CTSK would have a potential therapeutic effect in both the bone system and the immune system during the progression of periodontitis. Methods: In the current study, a small molecular inhibitor (odanacatib [ODN]) is explored to inhibit the function of CTSK in a bacteria-induced periodontitis mouse model. Results: The application of ODN decreased the number of osteoclasts, macrophages, and T cells, as well as the expression of Toll-like receptors (TLRs) in the periodontitis lesion area. Furthermore, lack of CTSK inhibited the expression of TLR4, TLR5, and TLR9 and their downstream cytokine signaling in the gingival epithelial cells in periodontitis lesions, demonstrating that the innate immune response was inhibited in periodontitis. Conclusion: The present results show that inhibition of CTSK can prevent bone loss and the immune response during the progression of periodontitis, indicating that CTSK is a promising target for treating inflammatory diseases such as periodontitis by affecting both osteoclasts and the immune system.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Hao L; Chen J; Zhu Z; Reddy MS; Mountz JD; Chen W; Li YP
  • Start Page

  • 972
  • End Page

  • 983
  • Volume

  • 86
  • Issue

  • 8