Objectives: Oral lichen planus (OLP) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the oral mucosa. Its etiology is still unclear. Neurogenic components might contribute to the inflammatory process. The oral mucosa is richly innervated by sensory fibers. Mediators secreted by inflammatory cells activate sensory nerves via transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor 1 (TRPV1) and lead to the release of neuropeptides. So far, TRPV1 receptor expression was detected on neurons. Only recently, TRPV1 receptors were identified in nonneuronal tissues. The aim of the present study was to detect the presence of TRPV1 receptors and peripheral expression of receptor mRNA in normal oral mucosa and mucous membranes from OLP patients. Methods: Presence of TRPV1 receptor proteins in the mucosal tissue was assessed by immunohistochemistry. Expression of TRPV1 receptor mRNA was determined by quantitative RT-PCR. Results: We provided qualitative and quantitative immunohistochemical evidence that TRPV1 receptors are present in normal human oral mucosa and that their expression is increased in OLP. The number of immunopositive cells was elevated in the epithelium, and vascular endothelial cells, lymphocytes and fibroblasts of the subepithelium were also labeled in samples obtained from OLP patients. The local expression of nonneuronal TRPV1 receptors was proven at mRNA level using quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Conclusions: Since the number of TRPV1 receptor-positive nonneural cells is increased in inflammatory conditions, we hypothesize that TRPV1-receptor-mediated processes might play role in the pathogenesis of OLP.
- Oral lichen planus
- Quantitative real-time RT-PCR
- Transient receptor potential vanilloid
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems