Date of Award

Summer 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Liu, Dawei

Second Advisor

Bradley, Thomas G.

Third Advisor

Makky, Khadijah


Low magnitude mechanical vibration is a therapeutic adjunct being investigated to alter bone remodeling and inflammation in areas such as osteoporosis, bone fracture healing, and muscle soreness after exercise. In orthodontics a device named AcceleDent has been marketed that claims to increase the rate of tooth movement and decrease pain. However evidence for these claims is lacking. In this study we looked at two potential cellular mechanisms for these claims: periodontal ligament (PDL) cell differentiation and inflammation under an orthodontic model of strain (IL-1β). Increased PDL cell differentiation into osteogenic cells could be an avenue of increasing orthodontic tooth movement. To test for cell differentiation, cultured human PDL cells were observed for calcification by Alizarin Red staining. Also the gene expression of periostin, a cytokine with roles in bone formation, was analyzed using qPCR. To test for inflammation, the gene expression of MMP-13, an inflammatory cytokine was tested. The cells were treated under conditions of +/- Il-1β (10 ng/ml) and +/- 0.3g/30Hz vibration. PDL cell differentiation was decreased with addition of IL-1β (1 ng/ml), as expected under an inflammatory environment. However vibration exhibited no observable effect. Gene expressions of periostin and MMP-13 under all conditions showed no statistically significant results. However, a general trend was noted that vibration may decrease inflammation/MMP-13 production. These findings warrant further investigation.